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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



'My league's bigger than yours'

Professor Simon Chadwick takes a look at the thorny issue of which is the biggest league in European football.   Although the conclusions are not surprising, the evidence and its appraisal are interesting.

Life 1, Football 0?

August used to be known as the 'silly season' in journalism.  Journos were off on their own holidays and there were no real news stories.   At the moment, of course, there are three major local wars going on in the world.

Is football making a break through in the US?

It's a question which has been asked many times before and usually gets a positive but over optimistic answer.   However, the attendance of 109,318 for last night's game between Manchester United and Real Madrid was the biggest ever recorded in the US for a soccer game and was impressive by any standards. Apparently, the fact that the crowd sat on benches helped to cram them in.

More go to galleries than to football

We are used to comparing football attendances across countries, as we did for top European clubs recently, or between different leagues.  But what about the comparison between football and other ways of spending one's leisure time?

Soccer still short of a breakthrough in the US

Every time there is a World Cup one can expect a slew of articles proclaiming that soccer has now 'established' itself in the United States.   To be fair, Major League Soccer (MLS) has made steady progress, but it is still some way behind the major traditional sports such as baseball and American football.

Football League attendances up

Attendances in the Sky Bet Football League rose by 136,000 or one per cent in the season just ended. However, this global figure conceals differences between the leagues.   Attendances in the Championship were down by five per cent and up by 18.4 per cent in League One.   League Two attendances increased by just under one per cent.

The price of relegation from the Premiership

It remains to be seen which three clubs will be relegated from the Premier League this season, but they can expect to pay a high price.   Research by Nick Harris shows that the three demoted clubs can expect to see their income fall by at least £20m next season.  Crowds will fall, typically by more than 4,000 per game.  Only five of the 27 relegated teams from the past nine seasons have gone straight back up.

Attendances continue to rise

Last season's average Barclays Premier League attendance of 35,931 was the sixth highest since league football began in 1888.   Attendances have been growing again this season.  If the present average of 36,412 is maintained it will become the third largest ever.

Crowds would have only been larger in 1948-49 (38,776) and 1949-50 (37,400).  These were years when the disruption of the immediate aftermath of war had been overcome, but there was a lack of entertainment alternatives.

Sky Blues attendances slump

Coventry City's attendances have slumped with games being played in Northampton.   Indeed, the club has recorded its ten worst home attendances ever.   Nearby Conference club Nuneaton Town are catching up with the Sky Blues as their promotion push gains momentum.

One might think that Sisu, the owners of Coventry City, would learn something from this, but probably not.

Foxes post big loss

Leicester City FC made a loss of £34m in the 2012-13 season, reflecting how much it can cost a benefactor to get a football club promoted. However, the club are now on track to take the Championship title which is just as well as a similar loss next season would lead to a £20m fine under financial fair play rules.

A fall in ticket sales and revenue contributed to the £4.3m increase in losses from the previous year. But City say the figures also reflect the purchase of the King Power Stadium, and that important progress has been made meeting Financial Fair Play rules.