To read this content please select one of the options below:

The effectiveness of UEFA Financial Fair Play: evidence from England and France, 2008–2018

Aurélien Francois (Faculty of Sports Science, University of Rouen, Mont-Saint-Aignan, France)
Nadine Dermit-Richard (Faculty of Sports Science, University of Rouen, Mont-Saint-Aignan, France)
Daniel Plumley (Finance, Accounting and Business Systems, Sheffield Business School, Sheffield Hallam University, Sheffield, UK)
Rob Wilson (Finance, Accounting and Business Systems, Sheffield Business School, Sheffield Hallam University, Sheffield, UK)
Natacha Heutte (Faculty of Sports Science, University of Rouen, Mont-Saint-Aignan, France)

Sport, Business and Management

ISSN: 2042-678X

Article publication date: 18 October 2021

Issue publication date: 2 June 2022

1321

Abstract

Purpose

This paper analyses the effectiveness of UEFA's Financial Fair Play (FFP) under the break-even requirement.

Design/methodology/approach

Data was collected from English and French football clubs competing in the English Premier League (EPL) and in Ligue 1 (L1) for the financial years 2008–2018. Our sample includes 395 club-year observations. Relevant statistical tests have been conducted with the aim of analysing the effects of pre (2008–2012) and post (2012–2018) FFP enforcement under both profitability and cost-efficiency assumptions.

Findings

In the EPL, an increase is observed in clubs' profitability through both operating and break-even results. In L1, this improvement is only significant for break-even results of clubs not participating regularly in European competitions (non Euro-oriented clubs). Player expenditures, measured through two wage-to-revenue ratios excluding trading activity for one and including it for the other, have significantly decreased in the EPL except for the Euro-oriented clubs for this latter. Conversely, in L1, this decrease is only significant in both wage-to-revenue ratios for non Euro-oriented clubs and for the whole sample when trading is included.

Practical implications

In addition to evidencing contrasting results in FFP effectiveness across countries, our results suggest it is not the sole cause of such an improvement in clubs' finances. We suggest that UEFA should pursue its efforts to scrutinise the level of clubs' player expenditures and that there is a need for a wider look at the FFP regulations.

Originality/value

This article provides further contribution to empirical studies on FFP effectiveness that have often been focused on a single country.

Keywords

Citation

Francois, A., Dermit-Richard, N., Plumley, D., Wilson, R. and Heutte, N. (2022), "The effectiveness of UEFA Financial Fair Play: evidence from England and France, 2008–2018", Sport, Business and Management, Vol. 12 No. 3, pp. 342-362. https://doi.org/10.1108/SBM-03-2021-0024

Publisher

:

Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2021, Emerald Publishing Limited

Related articles