IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this paper

The law of unintended consequences in soccer: impact of three-point-a-win rule on strategies and outcomes


  • Oleksandr Shepotylo

    () (Kyiv School of Economics, Kyiv Economics Institute)


This paper analyzes whether the three-point rule in soccer brought more action to the game for a large sample of European championships in 1990-1997, revealing team-specic heterogeneity of responses caused by differences in team tactics in the period prior to the rule change. Teams that relied more heavily on tie-intensive tactics dramatically changed their behavior towards more attacking style in away games, considerably reducing probability of a tie. Interestingly, even though the three-point rule signicantly reduced proportion of ties, it did not bring more goals into the game because the increased rewards of scoring when the current score is tied were oset by increased incentives of defending the current score when one team led.

Suggested Citation

  • Oleksandr Shepotylo, 2010. "The law of unintended consequences in soccer: impact of three-point-a-win rule on strategies and outcomes," Discussion Papers 30, Kyiv School of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:kse:dpaper:30
    Note: Submitted to Journal of Sports Economics

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    File Function: June 2010
    Download Restriction: no

    More about this item


    heterogeneous response; soccer; sports; three-point system;

    JEL classification:

    • C40 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods: Special Topics - - - General
    • L51 - Industrial Organization - - Regulation and Industrial Policy - - - Economics of Regulation
    • L83 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Services - - - Sports; Gambling; Restaurants; Recreation; Tourism

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:kse:dpaper:30. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Iryna Sobetska). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.