Global Business of Soccer Recap


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


MLS Players Birthplace MapForeign or Domestic: The Spending Habits of MLS Clubs in 2014 (Business of Soccer)

Last week, Business of Soccer took a look at the number of players in Major League Soccer (MLS) from each part of the world and how much each region gets paid.

This analysis showed that the value of foreign-born talent is still relatively high in the league.  To better understand the salaries of MLS players, we will take a look at how each club chooses to spend their salary cap and how each club compensates American and Canadian players compared to foreign-born players in the league.

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Mersyside Derby 2014Fan Involvement in Club Governance: A Balanced Diet (Business of Soccer)

For the fourth straight year, BBC Sport has published its annual “Price of Football” report, highlighting the cost of being a supporter across the top 4 flights of British football. The most significant finding of the report, or perhaps the most controversial, is that ticket prices have increased at more than twice the rate of inflation since 2011. Fans obviously know that ticket prices have gone up, but the comparison versus inflation has led to an increased focus on the issue, particularly when one considers that the increase in broadcasting revenues, especially in the Premier League, could be used to help lower ticket prices to make it more manageable for the fans – at least, such is the view of many supporters.

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landondonovanrecordDonovan’s Final Home Game Among Five Sold-Out Matches in MLS Week 32 (Business of Soccer)

MLS week 32 average attendance is 19,268. The regular season average has increased 0.04% to 19,037 from 19,030 last week. Stadiums were 94.49% filled throughout the week, remaining at 85.86% of capacity for the season.

Five matches were sold out this week – Houston Dynamo versus D.C. United at BBVA Compass Stadium, Portland Timbers versus Real Salt Lake at Providence Park, D.C. United versus Chicago Fire at RFK Stadium, San Jose Earthquakes versus Vancouver Whitecaps at Buck Shaw Stadium, and Los Angeles Galaxy versus Seattle Sounders at StubHub Center for Landon Donovan’s last regular season home game.

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QPR FanAverages Fall But Premier League Gets First Sell-Out in Week 8 (Business of Soccer)

This week is a perfect example of why the Premier League is one of the biggest and most entertaining leagues in the world. From an 8-0 scoreline at St Mary’s Park, three goals in the final three minutes at Loftus Road and four superb finishes, one in stoppage time, at the Hawthorns there was never a dull moment to be had. Though not as discussed, but equally noteworthy as those events is that the first sellout of the 2014/15 Premier League season occurred in London.

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MLS15_IMGAnnouncement_v2_ENGMLS, US Soccer Partner With IMG to Market Media Rights Until 2022 (Major League Soccer)

Major League Soccer (MLS) and U.S. Soccer have partnered with IMG, a global leader in sport and entertainment, to market and distribute global media rights for the two soccer organizations for the next eight years.

The long-term agreement, from 2015-2022, includes MLS and U.S. Men’s and Women’s National Team matches played on American soil, as well as qualifying games for two World Cup cycles. It excludes media rights within the U.S. and Canada.

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Lionel MessiBarcelona Stakes $680 Million Soccer Empire on Catalonia (Bloomberg)

Barcelona soccer club, the four-time European champion and epitome of Catalan pride, is supporting the region’s bid to hold a vote on breaking away from the rest of Spain at a potential cost to its business interests.

Fans are turning games at the club’s 99,000-seat Camp Nou stadium into nationalist rallies, some players joined demonstrations calling for a split, and the club itself signed up to a campaign demanding a referendum. Yet the club’s success, both in sporting and commercial terms, is built upon membership of the Spanish league and its historic rivalry with Real Madrid.

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COBHAM, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 17: The new Chief Executive of Chelsea FC, Ron Gourlay, poses at the Cobham training ground on September 17, 2009 in Cobham, England.  (Darren Walsh/Chelsea via AP Images) THIS CONTENT IS PART OF A PREMIUM CONTRIBUTOR COLLECTION AND CARRIES MINIMUM USAGE FEES, CONTACT YOUR LOCAL SALES REPRESENTATIVE FOR PRICING.Chelsea’s Ron Gourlay To Step Down As CEO (FC Business)

Chelsea Football Club have announced that Ron Gourlay is leaving Chelsea in order to pursue new business opportunities. Mr Gourlay will leave after 10 successful years at the club including five as Chief Executive.

The club, and in particular the owner and directors, wish to thank Ron for his many years of service to Chelsea and support his desire to seek new challenges. Ron’s efforts have helped the club to achieve its position as one of the leading football clubs in the world.

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MiamiBeckhamPolitical Will Key to Beckham’s MLS Miami Plan: Garber (Reuters)

Major League Soccer commissioner Don Garber says an apparent lack of political will is making the bid to set up a franchise in Miami “complicated” and that David Beckham will need to find a stadium — or no club will be formed in the city.

Former England international Beckham has an option for an MLS franchise, which he has intended to use in Miami. But he has so far had two proposals for stadium sites rejected by local politicians.

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qatar-2022World Cup 2022: European Clubs Want May Date for Qatar Finals (BBC Sport)

Europe’s biggest football clubs could ask world governing body Fifa to play the Qatar 2022 World Cup in May.

Qatar won the right to stage the World Cup in 2010 but an inquiry over moving games from the hot summer months has been ongoing for more than a year.

The European Club Association (ECA), which includes Manchester United, Liverpool, Barcelona and Bayern Munich, discussed May 2022 as a potential date.

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nycfcbadgeNew York City FC Sew-Up New Sponsorship Deal (Soccerex)

Future Major League Soccer (MLS) franchise New York City FC and NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital have entered into a partnership that will see the hospital become a founding sponsor and the official hospital of the club. As part of the new deal, the two organisations will collaborate on a number of community and health-related programmes.

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