Now just under a week before FIFA World Cup 2014 officially kicks off, the pundits have already named their top picks. However, what do the numbers have to say? In regards to this, the statistics portal ‘Statista’ has released data ranking both the participating countries, and the top 25 individual players by market value.
- Spain takes the title of the most valuable FIFA soccer team, boasting a market value of $622 million.
- Of the 13 European teams, 11 rank in the top half, with 10 ranking in the top 12 (the only non-European clubs being traditional South American powers Argentina and Brazil). This further showcases European dominance in the sport in terms of marketing.
- Lionel Messi and Christiano Ronaldo are worth nearly twice as much as the 3rd ranking player (Cavani).
- Number of players in the top 24 by team (Most to Least): Germany – 6; Brazil – 3; Spain – 3; Argentina – 2; France – 2; Uruguay – 2; Belgium – 1; Chile – 1; Croatia – 1 ; England – 1; Portugal – 1; Netherlands – 1.
- All players play for teams ranked in the top half in team market value, with 23 out the 24 players playing on teams ranked within the top 12.
- Iniesta (30) and Persie (30) are the only players on the list older than the age of 30. The youngest player on the list is Paul Pogba (21).
- Position distribution of players: Forward – 9.5; Midfield – 13.5; Defender – 1 (half counts refer to Hulk, Muller, Reus, who play both the forward and midfield positions). The lone defender was Thiago Silva. No goalies made to the list.