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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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The match fixing problem

The immense growth in football betting in recent decades has increased the incentives for criminals to attempt to engage in match fixing and sometimes they find players who are willing to take part.  It's a long way from the days of people filling in the football 'coupon' and hoping to find instant riches.

According to Swiss outfit Sportsradar something like €375 billion of bets are placed each year on football matches.   Their fraud detection unit thinks that about one per cent of matches have been rigged.

Club clamps down on fan social media dissent

A good reputation is important to all businesses, not least football clubs.   Social media can play a crucial role in shaping that reputation, both positively and negatively.   But should a club seek to control the expression of dissent by fans?

The background to the red card on Spanish football subsidies

It looks as if the days of dodgy deals in Spanish football are over following the European Commission investigation we reported on yesterday.    In particular, interest has focused on a land transfer between Real Madrid and the city administration.   A land swap in 2011 saw a plot of land with a supposed value of €598,000 in 1998 revalued at €22.7m.

Commission clamps down on Spanish practices

The European Commission has blown the whistle on Spanish football practices with a decision that will force Real Madrid and FC Barcelona to repay illegal state subsidies enjoyed for a quarter of a century. Margrethe Vestager, the EU competition commissioner, has told Spain to recoup millions of euros of unlawful state aid to seven clubs that came in the form of soft loans, tax breaks and sweetheart property deals.

Forest takeover may hit snags

Greek shipping magnate Evangelos Mariankis has been linked with taking a majority stake in Nottingham Forest for some time now.    Some reports suggest that a deal to acquire a 80 per cent holding may be imminent.

Mariankis is the owner of the Piraeus based team Olympiakos.   They have been crowned champions for six consecutive years, this year by a record 28 points.

Sky Blues owners lose latest round in legal battle

The Court of Appeal has ruled against Sisu, the owners of Coventry City, in the latest round of their legal battle with Coventry City council.   There could be an appeal to the European Court.

Sisu claimed that a loan made to Arena Coventry Limited, the operators of the Ricoh Arena, was not made on normal commercial terms and represented a breach of European Union state aid rules.

Brexit and the Premier League

As with anything concerned with Brexit, there are many complexities and uncertainties.  The lack of reliable information leads to a vacuum which encourages exaggeration and predictions of catastrophe by both sides of the argument.

However, leading sports lawyer Daniel Geey provides an authoritative guide to the key issues concerning players.

Cellino sues Football League over TV rights

Controversial Leeds United owner Massimo Cellino is bringing a legal action against the Football League over the collective selling of television rights.   The action arises from the League taking out an injunction to force Leeds to play Middlesbrough on Monday night.

Rangers ends joint venture with Sports Direct

Rangers is ending its joint venture with Sports Direct having seen off a legal challenge from the chain. Rangers gets just 4p in the pound from merchandise sold from the deal.  Unfortunately, there is a seven year notice period so disentangling from it may not be easy.

Stadium loan was misappropriated

An in depth look at what has been happening at Northampton Town's Sixfields Stadium.   It appears that of a £10.25m loan made available by the local council, only £2m was spent on stadium redevelopment.   Police are investigating,