The Editor

REVEALED: Barcelona best at producing ‘Big 5′ players, Ajax most across Europe

By Nick Harris 21 January 2014 Barcelona produce more first-team footballers across Europe’s elite ‘Big 5′ divisions than any other club in the world, according to new analysis by the CIES Football Observatory and published today by Sportingintelligence. The Spanish giants have developed 44 players currently with top-flight clubs in Spain’s La Liga, England’s Premier League, Italy’s Serie A, Germany’s Bundesliga 1 and France’s Ligue 1. Sixteen remain with Barca and 28 others play top-level football elsewhere. The next best producers of talent for the 'Big 5' are Lyon of France and Real Madrid of Spain (31 players each), followed by Rennes of France...


‘Fluke or finance, the title processions in Europe in 2012-13 should be a serious concern’

* EUROPE’S major leagues delivered a string of titles by procession in Spring 2013 as a group of the biggest, richest clubs across the continent romped to runaway victories. Most leagues have always had one or two dominant clubs but is there something else afoot now? And what if anything does that say about the state of European football? This piece first appeared in the debut - and current - issue of Eight by Eight (cover below), available on order now.   By Nick Harris 5 November 2013 Last season, the wealthiest clubs romped to runaway victories in Europe’s major leagues. In Germany, Bayern Munich became Bundesliga champions with six games...


Arsene Wenger – what is he good for?

* ARSENE Wenger has helped to transform English football, on and off the pitch, since his arrival at Arsenal from Japan in 1996. Silverware and plaudits followed but since 2005, when the 'big money era' of Roman Abramovich's Chelsea and Sheikh Mansour's Manchester City have led to increased competition in the Premier League, the Gunners have gone without a trophy. Has Wenger been under-achieving? Has he in fact been performing as well as resources dictate, or better? What are those resources? The Arsenal Supporters' Trust asked Sportingintelligence to look at some of these issues, and that culminated in a presentation to...