David Barral, a former Real Madrid striker, made history by becoming the first footballer to be transferred by Bitcoin. The 37-year-old Spaniard will be joining Segunda B side DUX Internacional de Madrid (Inter Madrid). Barral has also played for Spanish La Liga clubs Sporting Gijon, Levante, and Racing Santander.
Reactions From Behind The Scenes
Inter Madrid made a lot of waves when Real Madrid’s superstar goalkeeper, Thibault Courtois, teamed up with friends Borja Iglesias and DjMariio to buy the club last year. One of the club's main sponsors is Criptan, a local platform to buy and sell cryptocurrencies. They were probably the driving force behind this move.
The club welcomed Barral with the following tweet:
"David Barral new player of DUX Internacional de Madrid, welcome to the infinite club! He becomes the first signing in history in cryptocurrencies. Thanks to Criptan, our new sponsor, for making it possible."
After making this historic transfer, Barral tweeted:
"Glad to join the project of @interdemadrid with eager ambition and responsibility to continue competing and achieve important challenges in my sports career."
A Landmark Move But Not The First Of Its Kind
This is definitely a historic moment in football history and could shift the way football clubs operate moving forward. However, one should note that this isn’t the first time a player was transferred using Bitcoin. That owner goes to Turkish amateur side Harunustaspor who paid 0.0524 Bitcoin (£385) plus 2,500 Turkish Lira in cash (£841) for Omer Faruk Kıroğlu in 2018.
Bitcoin And Sports
Bitcoin has been rapidly gaining a lot of recognition within the sports world over the last year. In December 2019, Carolina Panthers offensive tackle Russell Okung became the first famous athlete in The United States to be paid in BTC. As per his contract, Okung will get half of his NFL salary paid in the premier cryptocurrency, and he encouraged his peers to do the same. Okung said:
"Money is more than currency; it's power. The way money is handled from creation to dissemination is part of that power. Getting paid in bitcoin is the first step of opting out of the corrupt, manipulated economy we all inhabit."
Similarly, the Mark Cuban-owned Dallas Mavericks became the second NBA franchise to accept Bitcoin as a means of payment for both game tickets and merchandise. Payment processor BitPay was chosen to process all Bitcoin payments through the team’s website. BitPay CEO Stephen Pair said of the partnership:
“The Dallas Mavericks have been an outspoken advocate for Bitcoin, opening up opportunities for the team as it starts to accept Bitcoin for ticket sales and merchandise.”
Prior to the Mavs, Sacramento Kings started accepting Bitcoin payments in 2014. They also use BitPay’s gateway.
Disclaimer: This article is provided for informational purposes only. It is not offered or intended to be used as legal, tax, investment, financial, or other advice.