Gábor Rappai
Diána Ivett Fűrész

The evolution of competitive balance and its impact on demand is the focus in the field of sports economics. The results of previous studies examining the relationship between competitive balance (CB) and attendance, as well as the direction of the relationship between financial inequality and CB, are not clear. Through panel data of the top five European football leagues, we examine whether there is a causal relationship between the concentration of club wealth and CB. Using different CB measures and the player value concentration as a proxy for wealth concentration, we found that wealth...Read more

Yangyang Chen
Helmut M. Dietl
Johannes Orlowski
and Fang Zheng

This paper analyzes how investments in professional European football clubs affect the market value of Chinese corporations. Twelve acquisition cases with complete stock return data are identified between 2009 and 2017. Applying traditional financial event study methodology, it appears that Chinese corporations, on average, do not earn abnormal returns as a result of their investments in professional European football clubs. However, as exceptions to this finding, a few corporations show significant positive or negative abnormal returns. This study also hints at an association between the...Read more

Tim Pawlowski
Oliver Budzinski

Ever since the pioneering work of Rottenberg (1956) and Neale (1964), the uncertainty of outcome hypothesis (UOH) has played a major role in the economic analysis of professional sport leagues. However, decades of empirical research have not been successful in establishing clear evidence for the importance of competitive balance (CB) for attendance or TV viewers in European professional football. In order to find possible reasons for the gap between the UOH and (the lack of) its empirical validation, our paper adopts a stated preference approach focused on the fans’ perception of CB and...Read more

Egon Franck

Based on the analysis of the specific environment in which football clubs compete, this paper presents a comparative institutional analysis of three paradigmatic structures of football club governance: privately owned football firms, public football corporations (stock corporations with dispersed ownership) and members’ associations with an own legal personality (Verein). Against the background that “spending power” is the main driver of competitive advantage for clubs in the overinvestment environment of European football, the governance structure of the privately owned football firm...Read more