Search for your sports books:

Featured Publisher: Pitch Publishing
The incomparable range of sports books produced by Pitch Publishing over the past few years has ensured theyÕve secured a place as one of the UKÕs leading publishers of sporting material.

From the unashamedly nostalgic Got, Not Got and the thought-provoking If Only: An Alternative History of the Beautiful Game, to Andrew MurtaghÕs superbly-written Gentleman and a Player, Pitch Publishing are always likely to come up with something different. Take a look at their current range: www.pitchpublishing.co.uk




Read Review
<back to archive

The Club How the Premier League Became the Richest, Most Disruptive Business in Sport By Joshua Robinson and Jonathan Clegg

Release date: 10th January, 2019
Publisher: John Murray

List Price: £20.00
Our Price: £14.00
You Save: £6 (30%)
Buy Now

Several very good books dealing with the business of football have been published over the last quarter century. David Conn’s The Football Business (1997), paved the way, while his follow-up, The Beautiful Game? (2005) was just as insightful. Graham Johnson’s Football And Gangsters (2011) was a hard-hitting analysis of how the mountains of cash the game generates is syphoned off, and more recently, Martin Calladine’s The Ugly Game (2015) took an intelligent look at how the Premier League could learn from America’s (much richer) NFL.

The Club covers much of the same ground as previous tomes, providing readers with a comprehensive and very readable overview of how the Premier League developed financially. It notes, for instance, that over the course of the past quarter century, “the league’s 20 clubs have increased their combined value by more than 10,000 percent, from around £50 million in 1992 to £10 billion today.”

Pre-1992, the game was on its knees. When the government ordered top-flight club owners to convert their stadia into all-seater venues (at an estimated cost of £8 million), the chairmen hastily announced the game’s imminent demise. Nowadays, £8 million wouldn’t buy you a reserve full back.

Luck played a massive part in football’s transformation, from a sport dogged by hooliganism, decrepit grounds and falling attendances to an astonishingly rich cash cow. First, a small number of switched-on chairmen sought to break from the Football League and so retain more of the revenue they felt they generated and second, the advent of satellite television, in particular British Sky Broadcasting.

The people who ran Sky understood that its success as a broadcaster was wholly dependent upon a mix of ‘footy and films’. The business had deep pockets and paid handsomely for the exclusivity it demanded.

It didn’t take long for businessmen to recognise that Sky’s money offered a rare commercial guarantee, triggering a series of takeovers and buy-outs which left many football clubs owned by people who somehow satisfied the Premier League’s ‘fit and proper person’ test. Instead, the league was more interested in its self-styled marketing tag, “the most exciting league in the world”, even though most matches rarely live up to this billing.

The fans? Unfortunately, they’re just the folks who keep the whole shebang running: attending games, buying satellite television subscriptions, club merchandise and replica kits. Should they buy The Club, it would confirm the degree to which they’ve been taken for a ride.


<back to archive


MoneyMapp


SBOTM Current Top 10

In Sunshine or in Shadow By Donald McRae
Simon & Schuster
Read Review Buy Now
In Search of Alan Gilzean By James Morgan
Backpage Sport
Read Review Buy Now
Tiger Woods By Jeff Benedict & Armen Keteyian
Simon & Schuster
Read Review Buy Now
My Life In Football By Kevin Keegan
Macmillan
Read Review Buy Now
The Next Big Thing By Ryan Baldi
Pitch Publishing
Read Review Buy Now
Training Secrets of the World's Greatest Footballers: How Science is Transforming the Modern Game By James Witts
Bloomsbury
Read Review Buy Now
Zonal Marking By Michael Cox
Harper Collins
Read Review Buy Now
The Rumble in the Jungle By Lewis Erenberg
University of Chicago Press
Read Review Buy Now
Mind Game The Secrets of Golf’s Winners By Michael Calvin & Thomas Bjorn
Yellow Jersey Press
Read Review Buy Now
The Judge by Robin Smith
Yellow Jersey Press
Read Review Buy Now

Amazon’s top 6 best-sellers

© Sharks Media Ltd 2004 – 2012. Site designed and maintained by Marcus Hamblett for Furydesign.