The Real Reason for Russia's World Cup Loss

Belgium beat Russia at the World Cup despite having a poorer league and a cheaper coach -- due to a better understanding of markets.
It only looks like a game.

To the uninitiated, Russia's World Cup defeat by Belgium may look absurd. Russia is 13 times more populous than Belgium, its soccer league has vastly greater financial resources and it is coached by the most expensive manager in the tournament, Italian Fabio Capello. The reason Russia lost has less to do with soccer than with free-market economics, of which President Vladimir Putin's regime has no concept.

To continue reading this article you must be a Bloomberg Professional Service Subscriber.