We are often staggered by the amount of money a club is willing to pay to have a player sign on with them. Every man, woman, and child often wonders what it takes to fetch such a handsome sum of money. Just to give you an idea, Neymar moved to Paris St-Germain for a hefty sum of 222 million euro. His salary is also considerable – 36.7 million euro. How does that happen? Is Neymar really that good of a soccer player that the clubs are willing to pay enough to bail out a smaller country? Let’s find out what the factors are in determining the cost of a soccer player.
Let us disregard for a second that soccer players are people like you and me. Let us view them strictly as a business venture. Clubs invest in soccer players in the same way a businessman would purchase stock. We need to know whether the value of the stock will increase or decrease over time.
The age of a player is one of the biggest factors. Unlike accounting, running a company, or working as a bartender, athletes have a relatively short shelf-life, as it were. Their peak performance is reached around the age of twenty-five and is likely to decrease gradually over time. There are no old soccer players, as they would have no way of keeping up with fresh faces. Most soccer players retire around the age of thirty (there’s an idea). So, younger players are worth a lot more than older players. That being said, there are other factors as well.
Supply and Demand
There is a reason clubs often scout for talent. Apart from getting good players that will fetch them a pretty penny, it is also a great way to get young and durable players for a smaller sum of money. A soccer player that has not been discovered yet is thrilled that someone is expressing interest, which is why you can get some young talent for a few thousand dollars, instead of a few hundred million.
Scouting is similar to bargain shopping. You try to find a good player that is low-maintenance and doesn’t have an ego bigger than the average soccer stadium. Make them sign on for a smaller amount of money for a long time, and other clubs will fight over your new star, earning you some serious profit.
You might be surprised, but a soccer star that is thinking about the future does a fair share of networking, which allows them to earn more money while promoting certain brands and generating buzz from their latest love affairs.
Soccer players are public figures, like politicians, actors, and singers. This is why they are constantly in the public’s eye, and their statements, social conduct, and outfits are followed very closely. A player who commits a faux-pas will probably earn their club less money than before. The value is further decreased if the player is banned from playing, which costs the club a lot of money.