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Sport / Trafficking Talent

Trafficking Talent

Brazilian Football Players have become an international commodity. Like traditional products sugar and coffee – the Brazilian football player is now a billion dollar export crop. In 2008, Brazil exported an estimated 1,200 players, from Albania - one player - to Vietnam - 20 players. The world's favorite game still has its roots in Brazil. Jonathan Franklin goes undercover in Rio de Janeiro as he scouts for talent and scandals.

Photographs by Morten Andersen

I fly to Rio de Janeiro with a million euros. A Danish First Division Football Club has sent me to Brazil with a simple mission – spend a million euros in exchange for signing up young superstars who can dribble like Ronaldinho 2006 but can be bought for the price of Ronaldinho version '97. My mission is to spend 7 days in and around Rio as I interview club owners, local scouts and the shady middle men, FIFA-certified "football agents". When I find the right guys, I am supposed to immediately send the name, age and DVDs to Copenhagen. The money will follow shortly after...

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