The Impact of Governance on European Football Leagues’ Competitiveness
The sharp increase in TV broadcasting rights and the liberalization of the transfer market has completely reshaped the balance of power in European football, both within and between the different leagues. A trade-off has emerged with leagues whose teams perform well in the Champions League suffering financial inequality and clubs in financial difficulty, while those leagues which are less successful in the Champions League enjoy relative financial equality and less debt. The English, Italian and Spanish leagues are in the first category while the French and German leagues are in the second category. Based on interviews with several stakeholders, this paper demonstrates that this is mainly explained by the extent of financial regulation, which depends on leagues' and clubs' governance. It also discusses the role of UEFA and assesses the impact of the introduction of the financial fair-play rule.
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