Global Business of Soccer Recap


Here are some of the top stories from around the global soccer industry from last week…


Men in BlazersThe Rise of Men in Blazers: A Case Study in Authentic Positioning (Business of Soccer)

Once limited to a faithful collective of podcast fans in the United States, Michael Davies and Roger Bennett—better known as “Men in Blazers”—rose to mainstream status overnight thanks to ESPN, and perhaps more poignantly, a clever positioning strategy.

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VidicComing to America: European Pre-Season in the United States (Business of Soccer)

The Prince of Zamunda may not be coming, but the British are, and they’re not the only ones.

European teams coming to US shores isn’t a new occurrence. Before Guinness did the International Champions Cup there was the Herbalife World Football Challenge, and even before that teams have been doing USA tours for years, with Chelsea FC having done so on five separate preseasons since 2005.

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Bill Peterson, Commissioner of the North American Soccer League (NASL). Photo courtesy of NASL.NASL Commissioner Talks League Future Post World Cup (Business of Soccer)

Several Major League Soccer (MLS) players had a significant impact at the 2014 FIFA World Cup, including Clint Dempsey, Matt Besler, Michael Bradley, Kyle Beckerman, and Deadre Yedlin.  America’s top-flight soccer league, now in its nineteenth season, is looking to build off of the momentum felt in the United States surrounding the World Cup.  Rest assured, the North American Soccer League, (NASL) America’s second division league, is looking to build off of soccer’s rising profile in the same way.

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BoS_Del BosqueIn Soccer, as in Business, Innovation is Key (Business of Soccer)

Soccer, and sport in general, is a metaphor, a microcosm, for life and the experiences we gather from our challenges, triumphs, and defeats.  This is also true with business, and evident in this summer’s World Cup in Brazil, a tale of goals, new beginnings, and empires ended.  Blame the unfamiliar humidity, and the inconvenient travel distances, both attributing factors to surprising results this summer, but don’t overlook the role of innovation, or lack thereof, among traditional powerhouses contributing to disappointing results and early exits.

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Borussia_DortmundBorussia Dortmund Targets Two New Investors to Close Bayern Gap (Bloomberg)

Borussia Dortmund GmbH & Co. KGaA, the soccer club that won Germany’s top league six years after its near collapse in 2005, is seeking new investors to help boost salaries and close the gap on teams including Bayern Munich.

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Britain's Deputy Prime Minister and leader of the Liberal Democrats, Nick Clegg, points during a question and answer session after delivering a speech on international development, in LondonRussia Should Lose 2018 World Cup over Ukraine: UK deputy PM (Reuters)

Russia should be stripped of the right to host the 2018 soccer World Cup unless President Vladimir Putin stops destabilizing Ukraine, Britain’s Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg said on Sunday, warning the world would look weak if it did not act.

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GBSR SunderlandSunderland Welcomes African Leaders to SoL (FC Business)

Sunderland’s Stadium of Light played host to a government minister and key international development leaders from across Africa, as part of an international project to promote business between the North of England and the African continent.

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TelstraTelstra to Sponsor All Stars for Juventus Clash (Soccerex)

Australian telecommunications firm Telstra has become the A-League All Stars’ front-of-shirt sponsor in a one-match deal. Telstra’s logo will be emblazoned on the team’s playing shirts for their upcoming friendly match against Italian soccer champions Juventus in Sydney on 10th August.

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NorwayNorway on High Alert Amid Warnings of Attack Next Week (Bloomberg)

The terror threat comes as Norway prepares for a children’s soccer tournament, involving teams from more than 100 nations. The event, which starts tomorrow, has an “extensive” security plan and the organizers are working closely with authorities to ensure safety, according to a statement on the Norway Cup website.

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Italy GBSR 7.28.14Italy Administrator Caught up in Racism Row (Reuters)

Carlo Tavecchio, the favorite to become the next Italian Football Federation (FIGC) president, has been caught up in a racism storm after referring to African players as “banana eaters”. The influx of foreign players has been a hot topic since the national team crashed out of the World Cup in the group stage and 71-year-old Tavecchio suggested Italy should replicate England’s stringent requirements for non-EU players.

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Reporting on the business side of the world's game.