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"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

English Leagues


When should a football manager be sacked?

Was Sven unlucky to be dismissed at Manchester City? Did Mick McCarthy survive on borrowed time at Sunderland? Researchers from Henley Business School' ICMA Centre have developed a model which they think could give directors of football clubs vital data when deciding on their manager's future.

The model crucially evaluates the managers' performance on their genuine ability to get the best out of the team. It shows managers' points per game performance, when factors beyond their control such as transfer spending, wages and the absence of players are taken out of the equation.

Financial worries in the Football League

Two-thirds of teams in the Football League who responded to a BBC survey are worried about the financial health of teams in the competition.   They are more positive about their own financial health, only four describing it as worrying and getting on for half (18 out of 41) describing it as more than adequate.

Southampton record good profit

It is relatively rare for a football club to record a profit and Southampton must be pleased with the £900,000 they made in the last six months of 2012 after their return to the Premier League. It is the first profit they have made without player trading since 2005.

The benefits of being in the Premier League were clearly evident with revenues (excluding player trading) nearly trebling from £11.6m to £33.1m. Average attendances were up by 16 per ent.

Leeds wins policing court case

Leeds United have won an important test case over policing costs in the Appeal Court that has implications for all other clubs. The club is expected to receive £1m from West Yorkshire Police. Other clubs are expected to seek refunds for being overcharged by their police forces.

West Yorkshire Police were seeking to overturn a ruling that the club was not responsible for paying for policing in streets and car parks near the ground. The club said that it would pay for policing within the ground and on land it owned, leased or controlled.

Bury FC players on less than minimum wage

Bury Football Club's managers claims that six or seven players are on less than the minimum wage, earning £100 or £200 a week.  Admittedly, Bury are a cash strapped club, currently under a transfer embargo after they had to take a loan from the Professional Footballers' Association to pay wages.  

Wage bill soars at QPR

Queen's Park Rangers lost £22.6m during their first season back in the Premier League, Although that figure, published in the accounts for QPR Holdings Limited, was £3m down on their final season in the Championship, turnover soared from £16m to £64m. Debt is up from £56m to £89m.

Their wage bill doubled from £27.6m to £56m even before a significant outlay on players over the last two transfer windows. Wages represented 76 per cent of £73.8m turnover even before this season's escalation.

Leyton Orient launch Olympic Stadium legal challenge

Leyton Orient are launching a legal challenge to West Ham's sole occupancy of the Olympic Stadium. It was thought that the completion of a deal to give West Ham a 99-year lease was imminent, but it could now be delayed.

Orient want to ground share with West Ham and argue that the London Legacy Development Corporation (LLDC) have not followed their own rules in the bidding process. LLDC insist that the processes have been robust, fair and transparent but Hearn says that he has supporting opinions from two Queen's Counsel.

Coventry City FC deny liquidation rumours

The outgoing deputy chairman of Coventry City FC, John Clarke, has denied rumours that the Sky Blues are in imminent danger of liquidation.   There is no sign of a resolution to their year-long rent dispute with ACL who run their stadium at the Ricoh Arena.

Coventry sources had suggested that one option being examined was liquidating one arm of the business - Coventry City Football Club Limited.   Coventry City Football Club (Holdings) Ltd would then continue as the club's operating and trading company.

Debt up and a hefty loss at Liverpool

Net debt at Liverpool now stands at £87m and the club lost £40.5m in the ten months to 31 May 2012. This compares with £49.3m in the previous twelve month period with the club changing its accounting dates to coincide with the football season.

Essentially the club is paying out for expensive signings in the first year of Fenway Sports Group's ownership with the emphasis now on what managing director Ian Ayre described as a 'frugal' and 'prudent' transfer strategy in which talented players are brought in on sensible contracts.  

Arsenal bid downplayed

Arsenal are downplaying the prospect of a bid for the club from an unnamed Middle Eastern consortium, saying that no one has been in contact with either the club or majority shareholder Stan Kroenke.   They are also dismissive of the idea that Kroenke would sell which make sense.   He doesn't need the money and turned down an offer for his American franchises two years ago.