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News

Wed. 15 November 2017

Research, Regulation and Development – a three-pronged approach for African football?

Picture from left to right: Youssef Rabeh and Walid Azaro

CIES Researcher, Dr Kevin Tallec Marston, recently published an article on African club competitions for Goal.com; the information portal fully dedicated to football.

As Dr Marston explains, the double trend towards the geographical polarisation of winning teams and the competitive imbalance between squads in African club competitions deserves greater attention from football stakeholders. A three-fold approach combining research, regulation and development is, therefore, of importance to understand these trends.  

Various research methods can be applied in the exploration of football structures at various scales for a given area. These can include club performance benchmarking, sporting indicators as well as an investigation of how revenues such as TV rights are shared between clubs. This then allows for a detailed picture to be built showing how healthy a club competition is and, in turn, for the implementation of an evidence-based football governance structures. The regulation of critical areas that could negatively affect the competitive balance of such club competitions (transfer systems, contracts etc.), can thus be implemented far more easily.   

Research and regulation can, if used in such a way, then foster a more balanced approach to the development of football on the African continent. Indeed, such an approach allows for the narrowing down of actions to tackle priority issues such as the management of sports organisations, women and youth football and security, for example. In fact, as pointed out by Dr Tallec Marston, “developing the game” should be at the heart of any sport organisation’s mission.

 

Kevin Tallec Marston is a Scientific Collaborator at the International Centre for Sport Studies (CIES). He regularly publishes scientific articles. His main areas of interest cover youth competition development in North America and Europe with a historical perspective, and the global governance of football.

The article is available at the following link.