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CEP Discussion Paper
The Returns to Scarce Talent: Footedness and Player Remuneration in European Soccer
Alex Bryson, Bernd Frick and Rob Simmons
September 2009
Paper No' CEPDP0948:
Full Paper (pdf)

JEL Classification: L83

Tags: salary; two-footedness; premium

We investigate the salary returns to the ability to play football with both feet. The majority of footballers are predominantly right footed. Using two data sets, a cross-section of footballers in the five main European leagues and a panel of players in the German Bundesliga, we find robust evidence of a substantial salary premium for two-footed ability, even after controlling for available player performance measures. We assess how this premium varies across the salary distribution and by player position.