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Is Money Ruining The Beautiful Game We Once knew?

How football has been impacted by an influx of cash

Fans enjoying the beautiful game

Prior to the introduction of money into the beautiful game of football, the major source of income for football clubs was match day revenue, which came from the sale of tickets to supporters and merchandise purchases. Every football fan felt a feeling of culture and belonging; this is not to argue that the emotional part has vanished, but teams and their owners are now deeply involved in the financial side of the industry more than ever.

According to the CIES Football Observatory there has been an annual inflation growth rate on the transfer market of 26% since 2014.Players are costing an extortionate amount of money with the highest transfer fee in football history costing £190 million. Yes, million!

So, how did football get so engulfed in money? Simply said, the world has altered dramatically. Football has never been easier to access than it is now. There are an abundance of broadcasters who televise games nowadays, making it easier for individuals who are unable to attend matches to tune in and watch their favourite team play. This has increased the industry's prominence by making it a global market. Even though people may be unable to physically attend matches, they may still support their team by purchasing club goods on the internet, which has developed enormously in recent years, making it simpler for supporters to acquire merchandise.

How fair is the game we so dearly love?

Whilst the top leagues flourish in vasts amount of income the lower leagues are not as fortunate. In the 2019/20 season it was reported that the Premier league's revenue for that particular season was £4.5bn whilst the Championship's revenue came to a much lower £679m . "The rich get richer whilst the poor get poorer". Whilst it may seem to some there is a clear disadvantage between the two leagues as players have to cope with less advanced equipment and training facilities as the same time as offloading their best players to clubs who are willing to spend a 'generous' sum to snatch their most talented footballers it is just business for their owners. Big clubs playing in the top leagues are able to attract a huge support from people by fielding the most talented footballers they can get their hands on therefore in order to do this have to spend a vast amount of money which enables them to compete in the most competitive leagues.

The biggest clubs are able to spend a tremendous amount of money because they make just as much. UEFA Financial Fair Play are the regulations established to prohibit professional football clubs from spending more than they earn which in turn stops the clubs in the top leagues from purchasing whoever they want and monopolising the leagues and competitions they partake in.

However, is it really that effective?

Clubs such as Manchester United FC which have a world-wide fan base accumulating hundreds of millions in revenue each year are less likely to break these regulations than say a smaller club like Nottingham Forest FC.Whilst both teams play in considerably the most prominent league in football their revenue differs greatly nevertheless they still compete against each other clearly posing a clear disadvantage.

Clubs have found major loopholes through these regulations as of just recently Manchester City Fc were charged with over 100 breach of the Financial Fair Play rules. This was an outstanding four year investigation which saw the charges being dated back to 2009 until 2018. Whilst Manchester City FC have not yet been convicted of breaching the allegations this investigation brings major worry over the accolades they achieved over that period with many fans calling for them to have their titles stripped away. The outcome of this case will be detrimental to the footballing world. If Manchester City are not guilty this will make the regulators of one of the top leagues seem incompetent, if they are guilty there will be an outburst from rivals angry that they had the possibility to gain a trophy if things were conducted fairly.

As popularity continues to grow for this game we all love so much so will the money invested into this industry and it is not looking to slow down any time soon. Has money ruined this beautiful game?

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