Skip to main content

"If you want some accessible but informative insight into football then I suggest you couldn't do better than the Political Economy of Football website, which is not only intelligible but comes with the added bonus of being written by Addicks fan Wyn Grant."
Ben Hayes - Charlton Athletic programme

European Leagues


Relegation penalty for Ligue 1 side?

Corscian Ligue 1 side Bastia could be relegated for financial irregularities.  The €1.2m they owe doesn't seem to be a lot by modern standards, and they hope they could cover it by selling some of their best players.   However, the French authorities seem to be taking a 'rules is rules' stance.

Standard Liege sold

Roland Duchatelet has sold Standard Liege to the club's vice-president Bruno Venanzi.   He co-founded an energy company which specialises in green tariffs in 2003.   So far 83 per cent of Standard fans voting in an online poll have welcomed the news.

Court hits financial fair play rules

The Euroean Union's Court of First Instance has struck a blow at Uefa's financial fair play (FFP) rules, reinforcing the widely held belief that the rules lack a strong legal foundation.

Parma relegated to Serie D

Parma have been relegated to Serie D after failing to find new owners to wipe out of €22.6m of debt.   The club won the Uefa Cup in 1995 and 1999.   Given that the population of the city is 190,000, this represented a considerable achievement.   However, the club experienced an earlier bankruptcy in 2004 following the Parmalat scandal.

Spanish clubs face state aid decision

A European Commission investigation into illegal state aids to Spanish football clubs will be concluded by the end of the summer.  Seven clubs are involved, including Barcelona and Real Madrid.

If the allegations are found to be justified, they could face paying back billions of euros.  However, the Spanish government has said it will defend the clubs to the last as they are part of Spain's 'brand'.

A new source of funding

Retail bonds have become increasingly popular with investors as the returns from bank and building society savings accounts have become derisory.   They generally offer a return of around six per cent, but there is a higher risk, as there is no compensation if the business you are lending to goes bust.

The model is now being adopted by football clubs in the form of bonds that cannot be resold and are offered in small amounts to consumers.   The ability to repay is not always clear, but if you are a fan, and the amount involved is small, why not take the risk?

Financial fair play rules to be eased

Michel Platini has announced plans to relax some aspects of the financial fair play (FFP) regulations with the aim of stimulating competition and growth.   The rules have been criticised for making it harder for new entrants to breach the elite cartel of top European clubs.

AC Milan look for investors

AC Milan president Silvio Berusconi is looking for investors in the club from abroad, particularly it seems from China.   This is somewhat paradoxical as he also argues that there are too many foreigners in Italian football.

Fear of qualifying for the Europa League

Fear of qualifying for the Europa League is gripping Premier League clubs.  It's the one contest nobody wants to win.

Mauricio Pochettino at Spurs believes that the experiences of Manchester United and Liverpool in recent years prove it is more of a hindrance than a help.   'You have the opportunity to stay closer to the top four if you only have to focus on the Barclays Premier League and the cup,' he said.

Court stops Spanish football strike

A Madrid court issued a last-minute ruling to end a player strike that had threatened to bring the La Liga season to a premature end, as well as preventing the final of the Copa del Ray being played.   According to the interim ruling by Spain's national court, the strike would have caused 'grave organisational disorder'.

There would have been little prospect of playing the cancelled matches at a later date.  Javier Tebas, the president of Spain's professional league, had earlier warned that the stoppage could inflict financial damage of €100m.