IJSSH 2015 Vol.5(8): 707-713 ISSN: 2010-3646
DOI: 10.7763/IJSSH.2015.V5.544

Football, Migration and Sustainability in Thailand

N. Siriwat and C. Brill
Abstract—Thailand may be known as a tourist destination; however, it has also gain increasing popularity as a destination for migrating football talents. With a little over two decades of the Thailand Premier League in placed, sponsorship has driven the league to the top in the Southeast Asian region. Over the years, South and Central American players thrive to Thailand in search for a club to play in, or a team to potentially coach. As South America is home to the world’s greatest footballing heroes, the research unveiled the push and pull factors driving footballers to Thailand, uncovered the barriers to entry, as well as the migration networks that assisted the systematic flow of footballing talents. The research outlined that primary push factors included (1) poor economic conditions back at home, (2) fierce competition, and lack of opportunities to play (3) barriers to entry into a top team of the top leagues were much higher. On the other hand, pull factors driving players half way around the globe to Thailand included (1) higher and stable incomes, (2) welcoming environment, acceptance by locals, (3) affordable cost of living and welfare available, (4) families able to migrate, (5) experienced networks between agents and players available, (6) convenient to send remittances back home and (6) no concerns for safety – in comparison to other South American countries. Considering that over 112 non-Thai players played in the Thailand Premier League in 2012 season alone, it remains an extremely interesting area of research to fully understand this flow and form of labor to Thailand.

Index Terms—Football, migration, sustainability, Thailand.

N. Siriwat is with the Mahidol University, Thailand (e-mail: ninsiriwat@gmail.com).
C. Brill is with the International Organization for Migration (IOM), the Philippines (e-mail cbrill@iom.int).

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Cite: N. Siriwat and C. Brill, " Football, Migration and Sustainability in Thailand," International Journal of Social Science and Humanity vol. 5, no. 8, pp. 707-713, 2015.

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