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Football Business

Book Description

The public face of football finance is the exponential rise of players’ wages, ludicrous transfer fees and escalating ticket prices. Season tickets at some north London clubs are already pushing £2,000. But the real picture is much more worrying. Clubs operate in a global market for sponsorship and television rights and the competition is fiercer off the pitch than it is on it. The beautiful game has been defiled by commercialism and greed. The fans are becoming increasingly irrelevant to the business of football as their great, historic clubs face crises caused by massive debt and incompetent financial management.

The only way that fans can regain a degree of control is by understanding how the business works, and that means understanding the underlying economics. In Football business Tsjalle van der Burg shows how the economics of football have developed and been corrupted. In a series of engaging stories he uncovers the mysteries of football finance. Van der Burg explains why if the 2013 English Premiership champions, Manchester United, had played their 1960 equivalent, Burnley, United would have won 158–1; why Feyenoord should be called Royal Feyenoord, and why politicians and media executives party while the fans walk alone.

Table of Contents

  1. 1: Made in the past
    1. European not-for-profit organizations
    2. American entrepreneurs
    3. The 1960 All-Sports World Series
    4. The ‘third half’
    5. Old soldiers never die
    6. Rules of the game
  2. 2: Money
    1. Does more money equal more attractive play?
    2. Cutting your coat according to your cloth
    3. Michel Platini and Financial Fair Play
    4. More money than is needed
    5. A football tax?
    6. The fears of the Ajax fan
    7. Wenger and Mourinho
    8. George Best or Robin van Persie?
    9. Royal Feyenoord
    10. Real Madrid, really royal?
    11. Towards the end of financial aid
    12. No exceptions, Mr Platini
    13. Simply the best
    14. Brother Walfrid and a social levy
    15. A ban on pay TV
    16. New owners
    17. In search of a soul
    18. Profits and fairness
    19. Fair pay for players
    20. Money – a curse or a blessing?
  3. 3: Dreams
    1. The most valuable things in life
    2. What should count most?
    3. Bill Veeck
    4. Grandstand Managers Day
  4. 4: No equal chances
    1. More chances for the big
    2. David and Goliath
    3. Lies, damned lies or good statistics?
    4. Making a choice
    5. Simple play is the most difficult
    6. The transfer system
    7. A foreigner rule
    8. Lessons from America
    9. Great American inventions
    10. How to get things done
    11. Europeans are less social now
    12. An American salary cap for Bayern Munich?
    13. Go your own way
    14. A progressive social levy
    15. Sadder but wiser
  5. 5: The league system
    1. Silvio Berlusconi and Rupert Murdoch
    2. A true Super League
    3. What the fans want
    4. Different clubs
    5. What different clubs want
    6. Money versus passion
    7. Tearing us apart
  6. 6: The challenge
    1. An ever larger world
    2. The European Union
    3. A major democracy problem
    4. All the way from Brussels to Celtic Park
    5. Will you walk alone?