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Trading in Soccer Talent

Date: July 19, 2008
Author: ANDREW DOWNIE
QUOTE: But there are also potential downsides, especially for fans. Investors could be tempted to sell a player as soon as his value increases, robbing the team of a key figure at a vital moment. If funds control players on opposing teams, there is the appearance of conflict of interest. And many supporters fear that people with no emotional attachment to a club might exert too much control...Still, the involvement of third parties is controversial. A scandal in Europe over who owned two Argentine players transferred from the Brazilian club Corinthians to England in 2006 prompted football’s governing body, FIFA, to ban third-party ownership in January.

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