8 goals, 2 wins and to some it seems the World Cup is already in the bag, but bad news awaits
“England will lose to France in the final”, so says an insurer sponsored report which correctly predicted that Germany would win the last World Cup.
Obviously without anything better to do, the Centre for Economics and Business Research used the collective insurable value of squad players, based on their incomes and royalties until retirement. They concluded that England’s players are set to earn £1.17billion, only pipped by the French at £1.4billion.
A bit of fun and just more obscene numbers linked to footballers’ earnings, but insurance wise the World Cup is all about enormous amounts. Insurance on the players is estimated to be £6.8billion, with a further £7.5 billion on the stadia, equipment and the cancellation and interruption covers for the organisers, media and the travel and leisure industries. Much of the cover will be written in the Lloyds and London insurance markets.
Lloyds estimates the legs of forwards have an average insurance value of over £19m, with Messi’s rumoured to be £660m (obviously set before Argentina’s first 2 games and his penalty miss), although at the other end of the scale, Southgate’s shoulder injury is unlikely to dent insurers’ pockets.
Terrorism is obviously considered a major risk, partly because of Putin’s antics in Crimea and Ukraine and specialist insurer Beazley estimate premiums are 10% higher than the previous event in Brazil. A cyber-attack on critical infrastructure is also a concern, although it may do us a favour if someone put a bug in the VAR system (going by some of the decisions perhaps they already have).
Pre-tournament, hooliganism was a big fear, especially after the England and Russian fans behaviour at Euro 2016, but fortunately there have been no signs of trouble so far. There seem to be far fewer England fans than at previous tournaments, with many possibly put off by warnings about the Russian Police. The Russian fans seem happy after their good start, although perhaps Putin sent their trouble makers to The Gulag. Let’s hope they stay there if Russia get knocked out when they face a decent team.
The fans that are there need travel insurance and the Association of British Insurers (ABI) have enlisted the help of England’s goal scoring hero Harry Kane, to persuade England fans to take out cover. I have used a few corny puns over the years, but I hope not as low as ‘Travel insurance Kane be a lifesaver’ and ‘ABI urges England fans to harry up and get travel insurance or face Dier consequences’. I would probably have gone with the two Hazards in the Belgium squad.
Despite my cynicism about certain aspects of the World Cup, it has been great so far, but just remember that these events wouldn’t happen without insurance.