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Beautiful Game Theory by Ignacio Palacios-Huerta

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INTRODUCTION

Economy is the art of making the most of life.

—GEORGE BERNARD SHAW

Politics and high-profile sport, like religion, are about the whole of life.

—REVEREND MICHAEL SADGROVE (LETTER TO PAOLO DI CANIO)

TOWARD THE END OF THE 2001–2 SOCCER SEASON, A GROUP OF YOUNG MEMBERS of the Brigade of Martyrs of Al Aqsa met with a reporter from the Sunday Times of London in the depths of a basement in the Palestinian territory of Gaza. The candidates to martyrdom were talking to the journalist about the pain of their people, their wish to die rather than live like slaves, and their dreams of hearing Israeli mothers mourn their sons’ deaths, when another member of the group stormed into the basement. “Manchester United, 5,” he announced, “West Ham ...

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