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News

Tue. 11 November 2014

New record high for expatriate presence in the big-5

The internationalisation of football continues. The percentage of expatriate players in the five major European markets reached a new record high this season. Henceforth, 45.9% of big-5 league players do not originate from the national association of their employer club. More information is presented in the 88th issue of the CIES Football Observatory Big-5 Weekly Post.

The expatriate presence is particularly high in the English Premier League (59.3%. A new record high since 2009 was measured this season in Italy (54.8%) and Spain (38.9%). Expatriates represent 43.5% in Germany and 31.6% in French Ligue 1. Compared to one year ago, the percentage of football migrants went up in all big-5 leagues with the exception of the English Premier League (-1.6%).

The biggest increase since 2009 was registered in Italy: from 42.4% to 54.8% (+12.4%), while the strongest growth since November 1st 2013 was measured in the German Bundesliga: from 38.1 to 43.5% (+5.4%).

For the first time in history, the main exporting country is France: 113 players compared to 112 for Brazil (former leader) and Argentina. The strongest increase since 2009 was recorded for Spain (from 17 to 58 players in foreign big-5 leagues). During last year, the biggest growth was for Serbia (28 to 39, +11) and Belgium (31 to 41, +10).

More data is available on request at football.observatory(at)cies.ch.