A report by the CIES Football Observatory has ranked Nigeria as the fifth biggest exporter of footballers in the world, just behind Brazil, Argentina, France and Serbia. The report also stated that, “Nigeria is also the biggest supplier of football talent in Africa as they have 596 players scattered across the world”.
“Other African countries mentioned in this report are Senegal (10th in the world, 377), Cote d’Ivoire (11th, 370), Cameroon (12th, 366) and Ghana (13th, 365).“In total, 18,660 foreign players of 194 origins were recorded in the leagues taken into account in the analysis.“Footballers playing outside of their country of origin make up about 13% of squads.
“Five-time world champions Brazil remain the biggest exporters of footballers in the world as the report say they have 1,784 players plying their trade outside their country.“Brazilians are clearly ahead of Argentinians (929 players) and the French (758). These three nationalities alone account for almost 20% of foreigners present on a global level.“Among the 15 countries exporting the most players are six European, five African and four South American nations.
“This is despite the recent below-par performances of their national team, Brazil remain an exporter country of footballers par excellence.“Brazilians are present in almost all of the countries studied, making them the only truly global workforce.“However, no South American country is among the top five destinations of Brazilians.
However, three of the five main destinations of Argentinians are to be found in South America.“Similarly, the main countries to which French players migrate are geographically close to the home country.
The CIES Football Observatory is the eighth edition of its Monthly Report, which focuses on international migration in football. The analysis includes a record number of 6,135 clubs and 458 leagues of 183 countries worldwide