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Linking football, MBA through Distance Learning:

09-Jun-2016 12:22:14 / by Philippe Riewer

Philippe Riewer

Back in June 2016, Philippe Riewer wrote a similar article on the Premier League. Now with the Champion's league underway, it may be a good time to revisit how everything links back to business and management and how an MBA through Distance Learning can actually help. 

"Like many people around the world, I am avidly following the English Premier League, watching the games, reading the various commentaries and analysing the reasons for each team’s success or failure. In doing so I cannot fail to notice that the entire MBA toolkit can be applied.

It is also fascinating to compare the various styles of the 20 English Premier League managers and their respective impact on the performance of their teams. The surprising slump of Manchester United following Sir Ferguson’s retirement did illustrate the importance of leadership and succession planning.

Corporate governance differs widely from club to club, with some Boards of Directors reduced to endorsing the capricious decisions of their wealthy owners, while others have succeeded in maintaining long term stability like Arsenal. The relegation of Aston Villa, at the end of an abysmal season, had originated in its boardroom, not only on the pitch.

Given the large mix of nationalities within the pool of players, cross-cultural management is surely a prerequisite for success. International marketing is vital for professional football clubs, with viewers from around the world being targeted by sponsors and advertisers; so the brand image of a club must be leveraged in order to increase revenues.

Finances and the need to maintain a healthy balance sheet comes at the forefront during the transfer windows when player are bought, sold or loaned.  This is where LeicesterCity Football Club, this year’s surprising champion, has excelled. Despite having one of the lowest budgets in the League, the team had three of the best players this season and none of them got injured. Whether this was pure luck or amazing scouting capabilities is open for debate and will be known by this time next year. If Leicester can repeat this feat despite loosing some of its key players in the transfer window, then it will have proved that scouting for affordable talented footballers is one of its core competencies.

Although having a Master of Business Administration is not necessary to appreciate a good football match, a management degree would go a long way in explaining the competitive advantage achieved by the best clubs.

The inelasticity of supply of talented football players gives the few stars a huge bargaining power over the clubs and this allows the likes of Sergio Aguero and Wayne Rooney to appropriate a substantial portion of the value created in the form of astronomical salaries."

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Topics: MBA

Philippe Riewer

Written by Philippe Riewer


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