Even though I have a deep love for the footballing world, I can’t help but feel a little bit sad when I realize the large extent to which the sport is dominated by the flows of money. For example, Cristiano Ronaldo was a dedicated player for Manchester United for six years before he transferred to Real Madrid for an all-time, record-breaking amount, $ 131.86 million (Forbes).
However, what is most personally striking for me is my favorite player, Kaká’s transfer to Real Madrid from AC Milan. The signing was one of economic necessity; AC Milan needed the money and Florentino Pérez, the president of Real Madrid, offered €68.5 million for the transfer. According to the vice president of AC Milan, the team could not “allow to lose €70 million…the reasons behind Kaká’s departure would be economic.” In relation to my working thesis at this moment, I strongly feel that the Financescape not only influences but also actively shapes the ethnoscape that makes up the footballing world. Kaká’s controversial transfer only further proves the immense power money has in dictating the players’ membership. This led me to consider the ways in which money influences the game of football itself; Pérez is very open in regards to his tactic, which is to pay a large, attractive sum for players that the heads of their respective club teams simply cannot resist.
Unfortunately, however, this tactic sets up an increasing disparity between the club teams that have money and those that cannot compete; it is in the interest of the player to move where the money is offered. This decision is made for a multitude of reasons; obviously, the monetary benefits are undeniable, but moving for a large sum also implies that the team has popularity and credibility in its country. It is thus also in the best interests of the player to move in accordance to the money offered due to the massive potential to gain attention and popularity, thus providing a significant stepping-stone in the career. In the case of Kaká, it was due to his loyal dedication that he accepted his fate in moving to Real Madrid. However, in many other cases, it is to further a career path and make more money. This is the unfortunate reality that we must live in today.