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Are Three Points for a Win Really Better Than Two?


  • Alexander Dilger

    (University of Münster)

  • Hannah Geyer

    (University of Münster)


The effects of the three-point rule in the first league German soccer are tested empirically and compared to games from the German cup competition. The inclusion of cup games ensures that changes in league games can be attributed to the three-point rule. As a result of their relative devaluation, the number of draws should decrease. Furthermore, an increase in the number of close wins is expected. The strategy of a leading team becomes more defensive, resulting in fewer goal shootings by that team, as well as fewer shooting opportunities for the opponent. Empirical evidence supporting these effects is found.

Suggested Citation

  • Alexander Dilger & Hannah Geyer, 2009. "Are Three Points for a Win Really Better Than Two?," Journal of Sports Economics, , vol. 10(3), pages 305-318, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:sae:jospec:v:10:y:2009:i:3:p:305-318

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    Cited by:

    1. Wladimir Andreff & Gaël Raballand, 2011. "Is European Football’s Future to Become a Boring Game?," Chapters,in: Contemporary Issues in Sports Economics, chapter 8 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    2. Franck Egon & Theiler Philipp, 2012. "One for Sure or Maybe Three: Empirical Evidence for Overtime Play from a Comparison of Swiss Ice Hockey and the NHL," Journal of Economics and Statistics (Jahrbuecher fuer Nationaloekonomie und Statistik), De Gruyter, vol. 232(3), pages 210-223, June.
    3. Lee Yoong Hon & Rasyad A. Parinduri, 2016. "Does the Three-Point Rule Make Soccer More Exciting? Evidence From a Regression Discontinuity Design," Journal of Sports Economics, , vol. 17(4), pages 377-395, May.
    4. Manuel Frondel & Stefanie Schubert, 2016. "Sieg der Defensive? Evidenz für die 1. Deutsche Fußball-Liga
      [Victory of the defense? Evidence from the 1. German Football League]
      ," AStA Wirtschafts- und Sozialstatistisches Archiv, Springer;Deutsche Statistische Gesellschaft - German Statistical Society, vol. 10(4), pages 225-246, December.
    5. Dilger, Alexander & Froböse, Gerrit, 2018. "Effects of the three-point rule in German amateur football," Discussion Papers of the Institute for Organisational Economics 3/2018, University of Münster, Institute for Organisational Economics.
    6. Parinduri, Rasyad & Lee, Yoong Hon & Tiong, Kung Ming, 2016. "The effects of the three-point rule in individual sports: Evidence from chess," MPRA Paper 71060, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    7. repec:zbw:rwimat:082 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Eugster Manuel J. A. & Gertheiss Jan & Kaiser Sebastian, 2011. "Having the Second Leg at Home - Advantage in the UEFA Champions League Knockout Phase?," Journal of Quantitative Analysis in Sports, De Gruyter, vol. 7(1), pages 1-11, January.
    9. Sylvain Béal & Sylvain Ferrières & Eric Rémila & Phillippe Solal, 2016. "An axiomatization of the iterated h-index and applications to sport rankings," Working Papers 2016-11, CRESE.
    10. Manuel Frondel & Stephanie Schubert, 2014. "Diskussionspapier: Sieg der Defensive? Evidenz für die 1. Deutsche Fußball-Liga," RWI Materialien, Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, pages 25, 08.
    11. Wladimir Andreff (ed.), 2011. "Contemporary Issues in Sports Economics," Books, Edward Elgar Publishing, number 14146.
    12. Ricardo Manuel Santos, 2014. "Optimal Soccer Strategies," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 52(1), pages 183-200, January.
    13. Liam J.A. Lenten & Jan Libich & Petr Stehlík, 2013. "Policy Timing and Footballers' Incentives," Journal of Sports Economics, , vol. 14(6), pages 629-655, December.


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