Let's Get Messi? Top-Scorer Productivity in the European Champions League



Getting a player like Lionel Messi in the squad would seem like a dream come true for a professional football manager, but is it always best to have top-quality players? We study the determinants of top goal-scorers’ productivity in the UEFA Champions League. We find evidence of a concave relationship between age and productivity and uncover an inverted-U relationship between performance and minutes played. Finally, we find a positive effect on height, being left footed and being a striker on the probability of scoring a goal. The results have important implications for managers both in looking to sign on new players and to maximise their potential during a competitive match.