This paper aims to provide empirical evidence on competitive balance in the “big five” European football leagues, namely, the English Premier League, French Ligue 1, German Bundesliga, Italian Serie A and Spanish La Liga.
This paper uses recognised measures of competitive balance to measure levels of concentration (within-season competitive balance) and dominance (between-season competitive balance) in the selected leagues over 22 seasons between 1995/96 and 2016/17.
French Ligue 1 emerged as the most balanced league in terms of both concentration and dominance measures. The analysis also points to a statistically significant decline in competitive balance in all leagues apart from Serie A (Italy).
The findings of this study are of concern for the league organisers. Competition intensity is a key component of a sport league, and a league that is dominated by one or a select few clubs is less attractive within the marketplace. This paper presents challenges at the league governance level for the five leagues examined.
Ramchandani, G., Plumley, D., Boyes, S. and Wilson, R. (2018), "A longitudinal and comparative analysis of competitive balance in five European football leagues", Team Performance Management, Vol. 24 No. 5/6, pp. 265-282. https://doi.org/10.1108/TPM-09-2017-0055Download as .RIS
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