Friday, April 10, 2015

“That seems an awfully colonial attitude.”

New York Times - "Harry Kane, Globalization and the Push to Limit Foreign Players in the Premier League"

"Economists have long held up soccer — which has become one of the most globalized markets for skilled labor — as a shining example of the benefits of open borders. The Premier League now draws capital and labor from around the world, and produces a spectacle consumed around the world. That’s why Tottenham’s jerseys feature the logo of AIA, an Asian-based insurance company that doesn’t even have offices in England. And economists say that’s good for the players, their countries — and for England.

As in the United States, however, this expert consensus has largely failed to shift public opinion. The recruitment of skilled foreigners to take jobs once held by English players feeds into deep anxieties about the inflow of immigrants in a country that has never seen itself as a melting pot. A recent Ipsos MORI poll found that 45 percent of Britons regard immigration as the top issue facing the country ahead of national elections in May.

The basic argument is straightforward. There are only 500 player jobs in the Premier League — 20 teams, each with 25 players. Two decades ago, Englishmen held about 69 percent of those jobs. Last season, they held 37 percent, according to data compiled by CIES Football Observatory. By contrast, 61 percent of players in the Spanish league were Spanish; 59 percent of players in the German league were German. "

No comments: