Player Nationality On The Pitch: What Origin In What Position?

Player Nationality On The Pitch. What Origin In What Position?

Room 204
Clore Building
Torrington Square
Birkbeck College, University of London
London WC1E 7HX

Wednesday 16th May 2012 at 6pm

Given by: Dr Raffaele Poli, International Centre for Sports Studies (CIES), Football Observatory, University of Neuchâtel, Switzerland


The CIES Football Observatory is the leading academic research centre for the study of the professional football players’ labour market. The Centre publishes two key annual analytical reports. Since 2006, the Annual Review has been the definitive reference publication for information on football labour market trends and the logics of squad formation in the five major European leagues. Now in its fourth year of publication, the Demographic Study offers an empirical analysis of the dynamics at work in 33 top division leagues in UEFA member association.

In this seminar, drawing on data from both publications and the work of the Football Observatory, Dr Raffaele Poli, head and co-founder of this international research group, presents the latest results on the distribution of expatriate players throughout Europe according to their origin and position on the pitch. Are all origins equally represented in all positions? Are some origins over- or under-represented in some positions? How to explain the discrepancies observed? His presentation then tackles the issue of the pitch productivity of players in the big-5 leagues according to their origin and position. Does player origin have an impact on pitch performance? Do expatriate players perform better than national ones? What are the differences according to the origin of expatriate players?



Raffaele Poli is chief researcher at the International Centre for Sports Studies (CIES), in Switzerland. He is the co-founder and director of CIES Football Observatory, an international research group made up of Swiss, French and Italian academics investigating the labour market of footballers. Since 2008, Raffaele Poli is lecturer at the Institute of geography of the University of Neuchâtel.

Contact Details

For further details on this seminar series contact:

Sean Hamil
Department of Management
Birkbeck College
Malet Street

Tel: 020-7631 6763

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