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Does the Mobility of Football Players Influence the Success of the National Team?

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  • Dirk G. Baur
  • Sibylle Lehmann

Abstract

This paper is motivated by the observation that there is a large discrepancy among football nations regarding the number of football players that play in the national team and also in their home league. Two extreme examples are Argentina and Italy : Almost all members of the national team of Argentina play in a foreign football league and all national team players of Italy play in their home league. We focus on the question whether a country's success in international competitions significantly depends on the mobility of its football players. More specifically, we analyze whether a country's success is influenced (i) by the number of national team players that do not play in the home league and (ii) by the number of national team players from other countries that play in the home league. Our study is based on data of all 32 national football teams qualified for the FIFA World Cup in Germany 2006 including more than 700 players with a total estimated market value of almost four billion Euros. The main finding is that a country's success crucially depends on both imports and exports. This suggests that all countries that qualified for the World Cup gain from trade.

Suggested Citation

  • Dirk G. Baur & Sibylle Lehmann, 2007. "Does the Mobility of Football Players Influence the Success of the National Team?," The Institute for International Integration Studies Discussion Paper Series iiisdp217, IIIS.
  • Handle: RePEc:iis:dispap:iiisdp217
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Branko Milnaovic, 2003. "GLOBALIZATION AND GOALS: Does soccer show the way?," Labor and Demography 0312001, EconWPA.
    2. Eli Amir & Gilad Livne, 2005. "Accounting, Valuation and Duration of Football Player Contracts," Journal of Business Finance & Accounting, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 32(3-4), pages 549-586.
    3. Carmichael, Fiona & Forrest, David & Simmons, Robert, 1999. "The Labour Market in Association Football: Who Gets Transferred and For How Much?," Bulletin of Economic Research, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 51(2), pages 125-150, April.
    4. Robert Hoffmann & Lee Chew Ging & Bala Ramasamy, 2002. "The Socio-Economic Determinants of International Soccer Performance," Journal of Applied Economics, Universidad del CEMA, vol. 5, pages 253-272, November.
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    Cited by:

    1. Alvarez, J. & Forrest, D. & Sanz, I. & Tena, J.D., 2011. "Impact of importing foreign talent on performance levels of local co-workers," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(3), pages 287-296, June.
    2. Berlinschi, Ruxanda & Schokkaert, Jeroen & Swinnen, Johan, 2013. "When drains and gains coincide: Migration and international football performance," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(C), pages 1-14.
    3. Dafeng Xu, 2014. "Who Benefits from Globalization of Labor? Evidence from the 'Bosman Ruling'," ERSA conference papers ersa14p1089, European Regional Science Association.
    4. G. J. Allan & J. Moffat, 2014. "Muscle drain versus brain gain in association football: technology transfer through player emigration and manager immigration," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 21(7), pages 490-493, May.

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    Keywords

    football; international trade; transfer market;

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