Immigrants in the World Cup: How Do Foreign-Born Players Impact World Cup Team Performance from 1970-2018?
Bergerson, John Charles
The FIFA Men’s Soccer World Cup is seen as the most important sports competition in the world. Despite close connection between team performance to national pride, the impact of foreign-born players is largely seen but seldom discussed during this competition. When a team of immigrants wins, they are seen as of that country, yet when they lose, they are foreigners. My paper studies the relationship between foreign-born players and World Cup performance from the years 1970-2018.In the literature review I also review the migratory and economic factors that impact the relationship between foreign-born players and the World Cup. The goal of these findings is not to solve the question of a player’s impact, but to start a discussion into what the true impact of immigration on football is. Initially, my paper finds that as the number of foreign-born players increases, a team does worse in the World Cup. However, when key controls are added, there is a significant positive relationship between the number of foreign-born players and team performance, pointing to the importance of idiosyncratic team effects.
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