Monday, March 12, 2007

Shady Dealings In Ghana

When you couple the World Cup success of Ghana's national team, with the amount of money being made by some of the country's players, it's easy to see why parents would put their child's well being in the hands of an agent. But the story gets a little murky when these young players and their families enter the world of an unlicensed agent. Money quote:
Predictably, for many of these teenagers, a European soccer career turns out to be an illusion.

Most of these boys leave Africa without any contract – just a one-month visa. Their agents take them around for tryouts at the European clubs. But only if they perform exceptionally will they be offered fixed-term employment. Otherwise, they are expected to go back home. But that’s often not what happens. The agent, having lost his chance at a transfer fee, frequently abandons his failed star in Europe.

“When the players don’t pass their trials, they are left there stranded,” Habiba [a licensed agent] said. “They [the agents] don’t care, because they wouldn’t be held responsible. They wanted to protect their pockets with money, but it didn’t happen, so they don’t care. They will leave the player there. Whatever he will do to survive, that is this player’s problem.”
It's a shame, but these types of stories could probably be found in every corner of the world.

Essien delight at new deal [Sky Sports]
Anything to Score [NYU Livewire]


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