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When drains and gains coincide: Migration and international football performance

  • Berlinschi, Ruxanda
  • Schokkaert, Jeroen
  • Swinnen, Johan

We analyze the impact of human capital formation through migration on performance by studying the impact of football players' migration to foreign clubs on their origin countries' international football performance. In our model, migration to foreign clubs allows players to improve their skills. Its impact on national team performance is positive and increasing with the difference in quality between foreign and home country clubs. To test this prediction, we have collected information on the club of employment of national team players for most countries in the world. We have constructed an original migration index, weighing each emigrant player by the quality of the foreign club employing him. We find strong and robust support for the theoretical prediction that migration of national team players improves international football performance, particularly for countries with lower quality football clubs.

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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Labour Economics.

Volume (Year): 21 (2013)
Issue (Month): C ()
Pages: 1-14

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Handle: RePEc:eee:labeco:v:21:y:2013:i:c:p:1-14
DOI: 10.1016/j.labeco.2012.12.006
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