Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Soccernomics: The Green and The Green

It is Friday, I haven't posted in a while and there is lots of serious economic realted stuff to discuss.  So, naturally I am going to talk about soccer!!  As a matter of fact I stayed up way too late watching a grainy pirated-feed of the Timbers (did you know they showed the match in the UAE?) so now it is Friday afternoon and I am over-tired and my post about São Paulo and Buenos Aires will have to wait.

So off we go to talk first about the Soccer

First, turf.  The MLS website (which has undergone a transformation to essentially a news and blog site covering MLS and is quite good) has a long-form piece on the growtrh of turf in US soccer.  Unfortuately for all that length it misses what I think is the most important aspect - it does not discuss at all the aesthetic impact of turf on soccer as a spectator sport.  It asks the question: since turf is becoming so ubiquitious at the youth level will it soon become normal for it to be used at the pro level.  The focus is on players who grow up playing on it be accustomed to it.  I think that matters not one whit.  The point is what it does to the spectator experience and there I am pretty convinced it provides a lesser product.  I prefer to play on turf (except old or worn out turf) becuase the community grass fields are so bad in Portland. And I think they are great for kids. But that does not mean I want to watch pros playing on it.

[NB: Oops, now it is Monday and my unfinished post is still sitting here, so keeping on the soccernomics theme, lets look at the Timbers salaries]

Second, MLS salaries.  Here is the Timbers list:

For all you parents investing thousands of dollars for club soccer for your kids in the hopes that they might one day play for the Timbers and earn millions $35K.  Remember these humble salaries when you are out there cheering - most of these guys are out there for the love of the sport not the riches.

Valeri's salary is not surprising, but I was surprised by Silvestre - didn't think his market value had slipped so far. Takes the sting out of his injury, I suppose.  Piquionne: $150,000 for a rarely used back-up striker...hmmm.  Will Johnson is worth every penny, but I was surprised to see he had raised his value so high.

Ok, there, now I am done.

1 comment:

GeoGeek said...

Yah, but this doesn't tell the whole story. Silvestre could have a half a million hidden in the part we don't get to see and we'd never know.