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Incentives and Outcomes in a Strategic Setting: The 3-Points-For-A-Win System in Soccer

  • Moschini, GianCarlo

We exploit a major structural change that has occurred in world soccer to study the impact of incentives on outcomes in a strategic setting. A game-theoretic model is developed that captures some essential strategic elements of soccer vis-Ã -vis the number of points awarded to a win. The observable implications of the model are tested using a large dataset that spans 30 years and 35 countries. The empirical results support the theoretical model and show that the 3-point system has led to a statistically significant increase in the expected number of goals and a decrease in the fractions of drawn matches.

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File URL: http://www.econ.iastate.edu/sites/default/files/publications/papers/paper_12942_08021.pdf
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Paper provided by Iowa State University, Department of Economics in its series Staff General Research Papers with number 12942.

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Date of creation: 24 Jun 2008
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Publication status: Published in Economic Inquiry, January 2010, vol. 48 no. 1, pp. 65-79
Handle: RePEc:isu:genres:12942
Contact details of provider: Postal: Iowa State University, Dept. of Economics, 260 Heady Hall, Ames, IA 50011-1070
Phone: +1 515.294.6741
Fax: +1 515.294.0221
Web page: http://www.econ.iastate.edu
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  1. Garicano, Luis & Palacios-Huerta, Ignacio, 2005. "Sabotage in Tournaments: Making the Beautiful Game a Bit Less Beautiful," CEPR Discussion Papers 5231, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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  12. Moschini, GianCarlo, 2004. "Nash equilibrium in strictly competitive games: live play in soccer," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 85(3), pages 365-371, December.
  13. Shih-Hsun Hsu & Chen-Ying Huang & Cheng-Tao Tang, 2007. "Minimax Play at Wimbledon: Comment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(1), pages 517-523, March.
  14. José Correia Guedes & Fernando S. Machado, 2002. "Changing rewards in contests: Has the three-point rule brought more offense to soccer?," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 27(4), pages 607-630.
  15. Stefan Szymanski, 2003. "The Economic Design of Sporting Contests," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 41(4), pages 1137-1187, December.
  16. P.-A. Chiappori, 2002. "Testing Mixed-Strategy Equilibria When Players Are Heterogeneous: The Case of Penalty Kicks in Soccer," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(4), pages 1138-1151, September.
  17. Vives, X., 1988. "Nash Equilibrium With Strategic Complementarities," UFAE and IAE Working Papers 107-88, Unitat de Fonaments de l'Anàlisi Econòmica (UAB) and Institut d'Anàlisi Econòmica (CSIC).
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