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The Effects of the Bosman Ruling on National and Club Teams in Europe


  • John J. Binder
  • Murray Findlay


The Bosman ruling and its aftermath allowed soccer players to move more freely between clubs in Europe. This study examines the performance of national and club teams in Europe before and after Bosman. Some national teams improved after the ruling while others became weaker, but the overall effects are small. At the club level, there is little evidence that the competitive balance of the domestic leagues in Europe was seriously harmed, although in the Champions League the top clubs appear to have become noticeably stronger.

Suggested Citation

  • John J. Binder & Murray Findlay, 2012. "The Effects of the Bosman Ruling on National and Club Teams in Europe," Journal of Sports Economics, , vol. 13(2), pages 107-129, April.
  • Handle: RePEc:sae:jospec:v:13:y:2012:i:2:p:107-129

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Jeffery Borland, 2003. "Demand for Sport," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 19(4), pages 478-502, Winter.
    2. Yamamura, Eiji & Shin, Inyong, 2008. "The influence of a leader and social interaction on attendance: The case of the Japanese professional baseball league, 1952-2003," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 37(4), pages 1412-1426, August.
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    5. David J. Berri & Martin B. Schmidt, 2006. "On the Road With the National Basketball Association's Superstar Externality," Journal of Sports Economics, , vol. 7(4), pages 347-358, November.
    6. Eiji Yamamura & Inyong Shin, 2009. "Convergence, clustering and their effects on attendance in the Japan Professional Baseball League," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 41(25), pages 3257-3265.
    7. Buraimo, Babatunde & Simmons, Rob, 2009. "A tale of two audiences: Spectators, television viewers and outcome uncertainty in Spanish football," Journal of Economics and Business, Elsevier, vol. 61(4), pages 326-338, July.
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    Cited by:

    1. Deschamps, Pierre & De Sousa, Jose, 2014. "Labor Mobility and Racial Discrimination," MPRA Paper 60572, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    2. Ignacio Lago & Carlos Lago-Peñas & Santiago Lago-Peñas, 2016. "Democracy and Football," Social Science Quarterly, Southwestern Social Science Association, vol. 97(5), pages 1282-1294, November.
    3. Roberto Gásquez & Vicente Royuela, 2016. "The Determinants of International Football Success: A Panel Data Analysis of the Elo Rating," Social Science Quarterly, Southwestern Social Science Association, vol. 97(2), pages 125-141, June.
    4. Padma Rao Sahib, 2015. "Status, Peer Influence, and Racio-ethnic Diversity in Times of Institutional Change: An Examination from European Labour Law," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 126(2), pages 205-218, January.
    5. Berlinschi, Ruxanda & Schokkaert, Jeroen & Swinnen, Johan, 2013. "When drains and gains coincide: Migration and international football performance," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(C), pages 1-14.
    6. L.F.M. Groot & J. Ferwerda, 2014. "Soccer jersey sponsors and the world cup," Working Papers 14-07, Utrecht School of Economics.
    7. Marcén, Miriam, 2014. "The impact of the Bosman ruling on the market for native soccer players," MPRA Paper 61013, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    8. Dafeng Xu, 2014. "Who Benefits from Globalization of Labor? Evidence from the 'Bosman Ruling'," ERSA conference papers ersa14p1089, European Regional Science Association.
    9. Miriam Marcén, 2016. "The Bosman ruling and the presence of native football players in their home league: the Spanish case," European Journal of Law and Economics, Springer, vol. 42(2), pages 209-235, October.

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    soccer; bosman ruling; competitive balance;


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