The business of football
The business of football

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The business of football

Week 1 Football: a business like no other

Introduction to Week 1

Figure _unit1.1.1 Course leaders Ben Oakley and Jacky Hinton introduce you to the course and Week 1.
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This free course explores the business of football and has been developed by The Open University in partnership with the EFL Trust – the educational arm of the English Football League. We are very fortunate to be working with the Trust. They have been able to provide us with access to a wide range of people working within football, who you will encounter as you progress through the course.

One of the first challenges of this course is to explore football as a sector of business and how it differs from other industries. We begin by asking two questions:

  • What is the business of football?
  • How does it differ from other businesses?

Box _unit1.1.1

The English Football League [Tip: hold Ctrl and click a link to open it in a new tab. (Hide tip)] (EFL) (formerly the Football League) is based in England and Wales and is the world’s original league football competition. The 72 member clubs make it the largest single body of professional clubs in European football. The EFL celebrated its 125th anniversary in 2013.

The EFL Trust is a registered charity that governs, advises and audits the charitable trusts associated with the professional clubs of the English Football League, who have a combined annual turnover of over £44 million, and 2,500 members of staff, including teachers, coaches, professional health and social workers and many others to tackle community challenges.

Using the ‘Power of Football’, the Trust continues to flourish, delivering life improving projects, which engage with over 1.5 million people per year, focusing on education, sport, inclusion and health.

After studying Week 1 you should be able to:

  • begin to understand the business of football within and beyond football clubs and explore how it might differ from other sectors or industries
  • use theory to explore the internal and external business environment of football and the factors affecting decision-making in the football business.

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