Saturday, March 22, 2008

How Soccer explains Economic Globalization

Click here for a (shallow) take on the Globalization/Soccer theme.

Firstly- intellectuals, pundits, and Franklin Foer: STAY AWAY FROM SOCCER. Just because the sport is known as “the beautiful game” doesn’t mean you can use it to explain everything. Take the preceding op-ed. Yes, on the whole the Bosman Ruling (which the author doesn’t mention, but really is what he is talking about) has been good for players. But it has not been good for small clubs who use to survive by churning out young quality players and then selling them off for a tidy profit.

He also says that Egypt has positioned itself to take advantage of soccer globalization; his evidence is that they have won five African Nations Cups. What he doesn’t point out is that nobody gives a shit about that particular tournament. How many World Cups -the true barometer for national team progression- have Egypt qualified for? One, in 1990, where they were knocked out in the first round. Neither have they produced any world-class players.

He then contends that Egypt has a strong domestic league. I have no idea where he got this notion because the Egyptian league is not strong at all. How exactly has Egyptian soccer used globalizing forces to “enhance their domestic capacities”? If they have done this I would be very interested to find out how, but I just don't see any reason to argue that they have.

I have no problem with someone arguing that countries should prepare themselves to take advantage of globalization. But please do not use forced and illogical soccer analogies. It doesn’t make the argument more accessible. It only makes you look like a idiot.

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