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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

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Has Leeds' time come at last?

This site has argued for a long time that Leeds United have been punching below their weight.   The city is a prosperous regional capital and, unlike a number of other northern cities (Liverpool, Manchester, Sheffield and Nottingham) it has only one club.    It is the fourth biggest city in England.

Leeds are now in the play off places and looking more stable.   There are persistent rumours that erratic owner Massimo Cellino, who has been banned for football activity for 18 momths, may be on the verge of selling up.

Football in resorts: the case of Torquay

Ar first sight Torbay might seem to fit into Type 2 of our resorts categorisation.  Type 1 covered small, select up market resorts.   Type 3 were towns highly dependent on tourism that had fallen on hard times like Skegness.    Type 2 were towns which had diverisified economies in which the resort function sat alongside many others such as Bournemouth.

Big festive travel bill for away fans

Dedicated away fans face a big travel bill over the festive period according to the Football Supporters Federation.  The average cost of tickets, transport and food is £137 involving 402 miles of travel.  The lowest bill is in the Championship (£108) and the highest in the Premiership (£148).

Morecambe FC plunged into crisis

Morecambe FC has been plunged into crisis after majority shareholder Mr Diego Lemos failed to deliver on promises of investment.  Ali Abdulrahman Al Hasemi has resigned as co-chairman and director.

Mr Lemos has not been in the country since mid-November and has been difficult to contact.   The Brazilian businessman took over at the club at the beginning of September.

Oscar sale could suggest weakness rather than strength

The sale of Oscar to Shanghai SIPG represents good business for Chelsea given what seems to be an inflated price, but it has led to fears that it could result in a more general exodus of Premier League players.   It might also seem to suggest a growing role for China in world football.

No Yuletide shocks for Championship clubs

The Championship would normally cast a shadow over Christmas celebrations by announcing which clubs had fallen foul of its financial fair play rules (now called profitability and sustainability rules). However, the Championship has now switched to a three year rule to bring it in line with the Premier League so there will be no bad news over the festive season.

It's a results business

That's what we're always told and Crystal Palace had the poorest points to game ratio of any club in the four top divisions in 2016.   Alan Pardew has looked like a dead man walking for some time, saved only by his good relationship with chairman Steve Parrish.

However, Palace's American owners decided that they could not afford to be relegated and it looks like survival specialist Sam Allardyce will be brought in to grind out results.   It was mainly defensive weaknesses, especially from set pieces, that have let Palace down with Pardew favouring 'expansive' football.

Best article yet on world's smallest league

The two team soccer league on the Isles of Scilly has attracted a lot of electronic and print media attention over the years.   David Beckham even paid a visit as part of a commercial promotion.

Football in resort towns

Over the next few days I will be developing a discussion about the particular challenges faced by football teams in resort towns.   These include the presence of a large seasonal workforce; a high retired population who, if they are interested in football at all, may have allegiances elsewhere; and, in some cases, high levels of socio-economic deprivation.

Notts County deal sealed

It has been a long drawn out saga which started in February but Notts County have been sold by owner Ray Trew to local businessman Alan Hardy.    Trew put the club up for sale after being subjected to what he called 'mindless abuse' by fans.  They are the oldest professional football club in the world, having been founded in 1862.