When is it time for the manager to go?

After yesterday’s loss to FC Midtjylland, Louis van Gaal is again under pressure at Manchester United. Earlier this season, I wrote that he was doing fairly well given the players at his disposal, and he certainly didn’t have his first-choice team in Denmark. But after some embarrassing losses, it’s natural that fans – and maybe even executives at the club – are calling for the sack. In truth, it’s far from an easy decision. The market for managers is full of informational asymmetries. In plain English, clubs can’t always tell how skilled a manager is or how good the match…
Read more →

What would happen if ticket prices fell?

Liverpool Football Club is in the midst of a backlash among fans against planned increases in ticket prices. As an economist, I’ve seen similar arguments in other markets. I’d like to offer a bit of insight into what might happen if ticket prices fell rather than rose. Right now, clubs in the Premier League have no trouble selling most of their tickets. If ticket prices were to fall, then everyone who currently buys a ticket would probably still want one. In addition, some people who currently don’t choose to purchase tickets might decide to buy. So the demand for tickets…
Read more →

Mike Ashley was right to spend

Newcastle grabbed the headlines during the January transfer window, outspending every other club in Europe – at least if we discount transfers between clubs owned by the Pozzo family. As an analyst and longtime member of the Toon Army, I can’t endorse all of the club’s signings. But I do know this: Mike Ashley, the club’s owner, was completely correct to splash the cash. There are two big “cusps” in the payouts attached to final positions in the English Premier League. One is between fourth and fifth, with entry to the Champions League on the line. The other is between…
Read more →

1 2 3 4 5 21