‘Money, money, money?’ The development of financial inequalities in English professional football

Chris Platts, Andy Smith

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

7 Citations (Scopus)


There has been, over the past two or three decades, a growing concern over the emergence of what has been described as a financial ‘crisis’ in English professional football. In the context of the growing commercialization of the game, this ‘crisis’ has typically been explained in terms of a series of economic developments that have occurred since the 1980s, and especially since the formation of the Premier League. In this article we argue that, contrary to popular belief, these processes have longer term historical roots that can be traced back to the early nineteenth century, and to the immediate post‐1945 period in particular. We also argue that while economic processes have made a central, though largely unplanned, contribution to the widening financial differentials in English football between the late nineteenth century and the 1970s, these processes cannot be explained adequately if considered in isolation from other, yet equally significant, social processes resulting from the changing power differentials that characterized the dynamic, increasingly complex, English football figuration.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)643-658
JournalSoccer & Society
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2010


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