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! Football Finance

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In another High Court move, ‘Watford v. Gillingham’

Posted on August 4, 2010

I’m currently on leave, but huddled over my laptop following HMRC v. Portsmouth, courtesy of Portsmouth Evening News and Dan Roan on Twitter.  Latest news is that the court has adjourned for the day, and at least an executive summary of Mr Justice Mann’s judgement can be expected later on tomorrow afternoon. In the fairly […]

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Posted in Debts, Ownership, Stadium | 1 Comment »

More on Watford’s woes

Posted on December 19, 2009

The banging and crashing of egos in the Vicarage Road boardroom have died down, the club is not going into Administration, and it will not be deducted 10 points. So, Watford fans can dismiss the shenanigans of the last week and turn their attentions back to performance on the pitch. It would be foolish though […]

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Posted in Benefactors, Insolvency, Ownership | Leave a Comment »

Watford’s woes

Posted on December 16, 2009

As I write, the danger of having to seek Administration is imminent. The immediate cause of this possibility lies with the resignation of Jimmy and Vince Russo, together with Robin Williams, from the board of the parent company, Watford Leisure (1).  As a result, trading of shares on the AIM has been suspended, a precaution […]

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Posted in Benefactors, Debts, Insolvency, Wages | Leave a Comment »

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 »

Crisis and confusion at Coventry City

Posted on April 6, 2011

Since the end of January there have been various changes in the membership of the Coventry City Board, then we saw the sacking of Aidy Boothroyd, the tenth sacking of a Coventry City manager in the last decade (1).  Saturday’s three points against Watford brought at least some cheer to City’s fans, and the fear […]

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Posted in Insolvency, Investors, Ownership, Stadium, Uncategorized | 2 Comments »

The Portsmouth verdict…

Posted on August 6, 2010

… or the Great Escape thanks to an own goal. As a Pompey fan, not surprisingly my first reaction to the verdict of Mr Justice Mann was one of relief, a feeling no doubt shared by all Pompey fans, and especially by those members of the club’s non-playing staff for whom the threat of further […]

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Posted in Debts, Football League, Governance, HMRC, Insolvency, Law, Premier League | 9 Comments »

The times they are a-changin’ 3

Posted on April 21, 2010

The relationship between politicians and football governance has never been a legendary affair – it’s probably best described as at best ‘casual and flirtatious’ rather than ‘deep and meaningful’. True we have seen the major changes brought about by the Taylor Report (1), which came not just in the wake of the Hillsborough disaster but […]

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Posted in Fans, Governance, Ownership | 2 Comments »

More on Portsmouth’s woes

Posted on December 20, 2009

Since my last posting on Pompey (1), not a great deal has happened off the pitch it would seem.  On the pitch, Liverpool have been defeated, with the media reporting this as ‘Rafa this’ and ‘Rafa that’, largely failing to give credit either to the Portsmouth players or to Avram Grant, notwithstanding the statistics for […]

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Posted in Ethics, Fit and Proper Person tests, HMRC, Insolvency, Ownership | 2 Comments »

Trouble at t’top (and bottom)

Posted on December 5, 2009

While most of the clubs facing financial difficulty are to be found in the lower two levels of the Football League and the two levels of the Conference, the propensity to generate concern spreads out in both directions. In the Premier League the club with most cause for concern currently is Portsmouth. As I noted […]

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Posted in Benefactors, Debts, Insolvency | 4 Comments »

Insolvency overview

Posted on November 15, 2009

Three weeks is a long time in football management – it was only on 25 October that I posted my last overview.  Previous ‘overviews’ can be accessed by clicking on the ‘Overviews’ tag at the top of the page. With a number of clubs things have become clearer, but for many the confusion has just […]

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Posted in Debts, Fit and Proper Person tests, HMRC, Insolvency, Ownership | 23 Comments »

Sad news for Spurs fans?

Posted on September 22, 2009

The end of an era really.  I refer of course to the sad news that Chas and Dave are splitting up, following the death of Dave’s wife – a big enough story in its own right to make The Daily Telegraph (1) for example. The link between entertainers and specific clubs goes back from Robbie […]

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Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments »

A movable famine, as it turned out

Posted on March 30, 2009

The third Thursday in March – the cut-off date for clubs going into Administration who look like they will be relegated but want to take this ten points deduction this season – has come and gone. With the financial increasing pressures on clubs, many observers had anticipated a flood of Administrations. These included Barry Hearn, […]

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Posted in Insolvency | 1 Comment »