December 19 – Barcelona players are more likely to be key players for their countries than those at Manchester United, Spurs, Bayern Munich or Juventus. A survey of minutes played by national A team players in 2017 saw Barca players rack up 139 matches and 10, 846 minutes.
In contrast Manchester United players accounted for almost 2,000 minutes less at 8,927 minutes in 117 matches. Spurs were ranked third, just behind Man Utd, with 8,608 minutes.
While Barca, led the number of minutes with 20 players representing their countries, Juventus had the highest number of international representatives of any club with 22 players. Man Utd had 21.
The data, from the CIES Football Observatory, ranks the Top 100 teams worldwide and throws up some different names to the usual big club dominance.
Ranked in sixth place is Nicaraguan club Real Estelí with 10 players building up 7,648 international minutes played.
The three best ranked non-European teams are Real Estelí, Al Sadd from Qatar and San Jose Earthquakes from the United States.
The research authors highlight England as “the most represented country in the top 100 positions: 16 clubs. Five English teams are in the top 10. Germany (10 clubs) and Italy (9) are the second and third nations with the most representatives in the top 100 rankings.
“The presence of six teams from the United States confirms the robust development of the professional game in this country.”
There are clubs from 38 national associations in the top 100. Of those national associations 20 are UEFA members, while 18 belong to other Confederations.
Source: CIES Football Observatory
See the listing at http://www.football-observatory.com/IMG/sites/b5wp/2017/208/en/
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