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The Statistical Truths Behind World Sport

Gavin Newsham

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Real Madrid paid David Beckham $40 million transfer fee, but recouped that in months from shirt sales. Over the 4 years he was at the club, RM took in just over $600 million in merchandise sales. They then paid $80 million for Cristiano Ronaldo, and within 9 months had sold over $100 million of his shirts worldwide. RM and Man U sell 1.4 million shirts a year. And if you're buying a shirt, why not pay a little extra to have name of your favourite player printed on the back, at a £1 per letter. Which is fine if you're a fan of Chelsea's Denba Ba, but not so good if it's Jan Vennegoor of Hesselink (his full name).

Wayne Rooney is on a wage of £250,000 per week from Man U and pays £6.25 million in annual taxes. But he more than makes up for that with sponsorships from Nike, EA Sports and Coca Cola.

Most people think that 147 is the highest possible break at snooker, but it isn't. One player, Jamie Burnett (during 2004 qualifying rounds for the UK Championship) scored 148, and in fact 155 is technically possible. What it requires is for the opposition player to break, but foul and leave you snookered on all red balls., in which case you get a free ball which counts as an extra red ball (1 point) on top of its nominal value.

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