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The impact of ‘super clubs’ on uncertainty of outcome in the UEFA Women’s Champions League

Valenti, Maurizio ORCID logoORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-8029-9863, Scelles, Nicolas ORCID logoORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-6177-5307 and Morrow, Stephen (2021) The impact of ‘super clubs’ on uncertainty of outcome in the UEFA Women’s Champions League. Soccer and Society. ISSN 1466-0970 (In Press)

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Abstract

In the last 15 years, an increasing number of men’s football clubs based in the men’s leagues generating the highest revenue (i.e. Big 5) have started to integrate a women’s section into their structure. The emergence of these ‘super clubs’ threatens the long-established financial and sporting inequalities found in European men’s football being replicated in the women’s game. This study examines measures of outcome uncertainty in the UEFA Women’s Champions League (UWCL) over the 2008-2019 period and how this has been influenced by the presence of ‘super clubs’. Results indicate a growing trend toward domination by ‘super clubs’, with outcome uncertainty significantly declining for matches where ‘super clubs’ face other clubs. As indicated in previous research, uncertainty of outcome is necessary in women’s football to maximise spectators’ interest. Therefore, the authors recommend that UEFA should take actions to ensure competitive balance in the UWCL.

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