Football Management

Commentary on the management of over 160 English football clubs by Dr John Beech, winner of the FSF Writer of the Year Award 2009/10 Twitter: @JohnBeech Curator of Scoop.it! Football Finance

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The Magic of Football – still there in the Cups?

Posted on January 27, 2012

It’s increasingly difficult to see any magic in the beautiful game other than black magic, especially when you look at it from a financial perspective.  You only need to think of the narrow escapes at Plymouth and Wrexham recently, and both Portsmouth and Darlington are standing on the edge of the precipice. The Cups may […]

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Posted in Community, Fans | Leave a Comment »

The Big 1, 2, 3 or is it still 4? Or more?

Posted on June 9, 2011

Currently I’m working on a joint research project on various European football leagues with colleagues in Austria.  One set of data which we have produced so far casts some light on this perenial debate.  The latest version of the date centres of course on whether Liverpool ‘have fallen out of the Top 4’, and/or whether […]

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Posted in Governance, History, Premier League, Pyramid movement | 3 Comments »

A day of reckoning

Posted on May 23, 2011

I managed to follow the great play-off between AFC Wimbledon (to whom, many congratulations) and Luton Town (to whom, commiserations) at least live online.  Football at its most exciting.  I wonder if Andy Burnham chose quite the right words though when he tweeted “Wimbledon back in Football League. Brilliant. A great victory for all football […]

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Posted in Broadcasting rights, Costs, Economic impact, Fans, Football Conference, Governance, Merchandising, Premier League, Promotion, Pyramid movement, Relegation, Revenues, Sponsorship | 2 Comments »

Some stadium snippets

Posted on April 22, 2011

Mainly, but not exclusively, bad news from various clubs at various levels in the pyramid: Bradford City  (L2; population 294,000; nearest higher Level club Leeds United 10 miles [city centre to city centre, not stadium to stadium]) Younger readers may be forgiven for not knowing that Bradford City was home to Premier League football, albeit […]

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Posted in Stadium | 4 Comments »

Pride and prejudice

Posted on November 13, 2010

Prejudice is always a hard one.  Can we really be so certain that someone else’s position is irrational and wrong?  To what extent should we take account of the context in which opinions are expressed?  Is football really the place to drag personal ideologies in to? Certainly the last week or so has seen more […]

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Posted in Fans, Identity, Media | 4 Comments »

Denouement at Liverpool?

Posted on October 7, 2010

The long-running saga of Messrs Hicks and Gillett’s failure, first, to bring Liverpool’s level debt down, and, next, to find a purchaser of the club willing to pay the unrealistic price they were asking, has until the last few days been, to me at least, a soap in which there is constant speculation on how […]

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Posted in Debts, Investors, Organisational culture, Ownership, Points deduction | 4 Comments »

Manchester City following in Pompey’s footsteps

Posted on October 2, 2010

Manchester City’s financial results, published earlier this week (1), were generally reported uncritically earlier this week, notwithstanding the key loss of £121m, with the exception at least of The Sun (2), where there was some attempt to look beyond the positive headlining provided by the club. According to the club, the financial highlights could be […]

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Posted in Benefactors, Costs, Debts, Ownership | 10 Comments »

The inevitable tension surfacing…

Posted on August 20, 2010

Although there is always a tension between, on the one hand, the needs of a club from a footballing perspective, exemplified perhaps by the views of the manager, and, on the other hand, the needs of a club from a business perspective, it is inevitable that the tension will be greatest when a) clubs are […]

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Posted in Costs, Organisational culture | 3 Comments »

The trouble with new stadiums 4 (and final)

Posted on August 10, 2010

[See also The trouble with new stadiums 1, which looked at the argument that “We’re a club with ambition and we need more seats to reflect that ambition“, The trouble with new stadiums 2, which looked at the argument that “We’ve got the wrong sort of stadium.  We need one better suited to maximising our […]

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Posted in Assets, Costs, Debts, Stadium | 13 Comments »

The trouble with new stadiums 1

Posted on June 27, 2010

You may have noticed – I am not a fan of the new stadium.  At the Supporters Direct Conference I spoke briefly about ‘the myth of the new stadium’, and over a couple of postings I’ll  elaborate on why I don’t, in general, rate them. Broadly, there are three lines of argument that are trotted […]

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Posted in Stadium | 7 Comments »

Protecting sponsors

Posted on June 17, 2010

My third World Cup posting has resonances much nearer to home; just bear with me. Ambush marketing – the piggy-backing of events by companies who are not official sponsors (there is an excellent overview of the phenomenon in sports events here) – hit the news at the last World Cup, with Bavaria, the Dutch lager […]

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Posted in 2010, Ethics, Marketing, Sponsorship | 1 Comment »

A Political Football

Posted on May 20, 2010

In the lead up to the general election (and running alongside a large number of local council elections), I blogged on how I thought it significant that the political parties were wooing the fan vote, but did not hold out much prospect for major new initiatives actually happening after polling day.  Well, as many a […]

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Posted in 2018, Governance, Politics, Premier League | Leave a Comment »

Warring at Walsall

Posted on May 16, 2010

Rising up the pyramid when there are larger iconic clubs geographically close to you is always going to be difficult, because the size of potential fan base is constrained.  In the case of Walsall (League 1), within ten miles they have West Bromwich Albion (Premier League next season), Wolves (Premier League), Aston Villa (Premier League), […]

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Posted in Assets, Benefactors, Censorship, Community, Fans, Identity, Ownership, Public relations, Stadium | 4 Comments »

Italy’s new ‘Premier League’

Posted on August 27, 2009

The BBC has reported under the headline Serie A to form breakaway league that “Serie A is set to copy the formation of England’s Premier League“, to be known as Lega Calcio Serie A (1). Before looking at a rather important detail that the BBC omits, it is worth looking at whether the formation of […]

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Posted in Broadcasting rights, Governance | 5 Comments »

Arabs and soccerball

Posted on July 8, 2009

It is reported that Charlton Athletic are possibly the subject, again, of a takeover bid from the UAE (1) and (2), this in the context of recent annual losses of £11.5m (3), the selling of fixed assets (4), and relegation to League 1. Less than a week ago Plymouth Argyle (Championship) were taken over by […]

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Posted in Benefactors, Ownership | 1 Comment »