FACTORS THAT HAVE LED TO THE GROWTH OF BRITISH FOOTBALL 7
Factorsthat have led to the Growth of British Football
(English Football, 2012)
Factorsthat have led to the Growth of British Football
Overtime, Britain has experienced immense growth in the socialenvironment, the economic structures and the political position inthe world. Of all these levels of growth since the Second World War,the development of football in Britain stands out as the mostconspicuous aspect of British society. The growth of football in thecountry forms part of the main influences of Britain in the worldsince the world. The current British soccer industry one of the mostsignificant football industries in the world and shapes the opinionof the world football. To achieve this extent of growth, there aremany factors that have contributed to this advancement. Thisdiscussion seeks to explore the factors that have led to the growthof football in Britain since the Second World War.
Tofully understand the developments in British football, it isimportant to understand the situation of the sport during themid-twentieth century. Just after the Second World War, Britishfootball was not as developed as it is today in terms of investmentand activity. At the time, football clubs were worth far much lessthan they are worth today, and most teams were not managedprofessionally (Coxet al, 2002).In addition, the sport was not considered as a professional career asmany players were not fully dedicated to playing full time as theonly economic activity. However, currently the sport commands thecentral part of the media, the society and professional developmentof the industry (Coxet al, 2002).Players are fully professional, teams are professionally managed andhigh investments are made in the sport.
Oneof the main factors that have led to the development of the sport isthe growth in management and administration of football in thecountry. This is observed in the growth of the Football Association(FA) as a professional organization of managing the sport in thecountry. The FA has greatly contributed to the growth of soccer inthe country through the promotion of professionalism in themanagement of the sport and the teams. According to Soderman(2013),proper administration of a sport is significant in the development ofthe sport in a country and in the world. This administration is whatthe FA has provided over the years since its formation in 1863 (FA,2015). The FA has professionalized the administration of teams andclubs in the country, which promoted effective management of thesport.
TheFA has promoted growth of the sport by having the professional teamsto be part of the body and helping them acquire the skills ofadvancing football. This helps the teams to join the competitiveleague systems that FA runs (FA, 2015). The promotion of competitionin a bid to reach the top has immensely helped the sport to growamong the clubs and teams in the FA. In addition, the management ofthe leagues from lower division systems, to the championship and tothe premier league has helped teams to grow from the bottom to thetop (Coxet al, 2002).As a result of this growth, players grow their talent and they emergeas professional players for club and country. This is in addition toprograms by the FA to manage talents and grow them.
Thesupport of the government is important for the growth of the sport inthe country. The British government has been instrumental in settingthe right legal, political and economic environment for footballgrowth. The government allowed football clubs to develop their teamsand clubs as private entities, which promotes the efficiency of theirorganizations (Dobson& Goddard,2011). The British government set friendly policies that allowedpeople to invest in the clubs and establish soccer stadiums in thecountry. This contributed greatly to the identification of soccertalent and led to the growth of football in the country. In addition,the government helped the development of sporting facilities thatimproved the management and growth of the talent.
Heavyinvestment in the soccer industry is another important factor thatled to the growth of football in Britain. Financial investment insoccer has helped the sport to develop more sporting facilities andestablish better grounds for players to develop their game asprofessionals (Dobson& Goddard,2011). Investment in the sport has been made by the private companiesand individuals who own the football clubs and teams in the country.As a result of high investment in the teams, the sport has grown interms of stronger management, and better results of the clubs.Financial investment allows teams to acquire better players and hireexpert coaches to develop the players to professional superstars inthe game. A good example is the turnaround that the club ManchesterCity and Chelsea had after the wealthy takeovers by the rich owners.
Theinvestment in football clubs and the development of structures in thesoccer teams led to the growth of rich and famous football clubs inBritain. The growth of football clubs in Britain significantlycontributed to the growth of talent, and promotion of the gamelocally and internationally (Gerber, 2013). According to Gerber(2013), the football clubs in England play a significant role in notonly maturing and developing football talents, but also inidentifying talent from the grassroots in the country. The clubs givea platform for the footballers in the country to not only play thesport, but also contribute to the growth of other players (Dobson& Goddard,2011). For instance, the growth of big clubs like Chelsea, Liverpool,Arsenal and Manchester United among others helped the development ofbig football stars. According to Cox et al (2002), soccer stars likeCantona and Best among others, have heavily influenced new players togrow.
Thegrowth of football in the country is greatly contributed by theemergence of wealthy sponsors in Britain’s corporate bodies.According to Douviset al (2015),rich companies invest large sums of money in sponsorship for thedevelopment of the sport. As they seek to build their brands aroundthe growth and the success of British football, sponsors contributefinancially towards the growth of soccer in Britain (Douviset al, 2015).According to Gerber (2013), the growth of football is highlydependent on the level of sponsorship and financing in the sportingindustry. The level of sponsorship in Britain is significantly higherbecause of the number of sponsors and the amounts of money theyinject into the game.
Oneof the major sponsors in the growth of soccer is the Banks andcommercial institutions. The most dominant is the Barclays Bank,which has sponsored the FA for a long time. It is for this reason whythe premier league is called the Barclays Premier League. Accordingto the FA (2015), Barclays has sponsored the FA Football League from1980 to 1993, and currently the premier league since 2001 to thetunes of as much as £40mper year.Another sponsor to the FA is Coca-Cola that sponsors the lowerdivision league, among other sponsors (FA, 2015). These are amongother sponsor to the football body like Carling, Capital One, Sky Betand Emirates (FA, 2015). The investments help the FA to run theleagues and to develop infrastructure for improving the game. Othersponsors are Insurance companies, soft drink companies and companiesamong many other sponsors who finance independent clubs.
Themedia is another important contribution to the growth of soccer inthe country. According to Dobsonand Goddard(2011), the media has invested a large amount of time and money todevelop the game on the screens by promoting it. Large media houseslike the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) and Sky Sports haveopened the British soccer talents to the world. These companies dothis as part of their business venture to make money from the largeviewership that the sport draws (Dobson& Goddard,2011). However, as they do so, they expose the local talent to theworld, and lead to the development of players as international stars.In addition to media houses invest in the growth of the game bysponsoring leagues and teams, as they seek to grow with the sport.According to Soderman(2013), themedia houses invest money in football in order to secure Televisionviewing rights for football in the country. This makes the Britishfootball leagues, especially the Premier League among the mostexpensive league to broadcast in the world.
Thegrowth in British football is contributed by the large investment inthe sport, especially because of friendly environment provided by thegovernment. At the same time, the development of professionalmanagement by the FA and the support the institution gives to memberclubs has helped the sport grow. Moreover, the investment in thesport through sponsorships and exposure by the media has helped thesport grow to the current glory. As a result, British football hasgrown immensely since the Second World War, and become a significantsocial aspect of the British society.
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