The Attractiveness of National and International Football Leagues: Perspectives of Fans of ‘‘Star Clubs’’ and ‘‘Underdogs’’
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The goal of this study is to determine what factors affect the attractiveness of both national football leagues and the Champions League from the perspective of fans, and how these factors are perceived by fans of clubs at the top and bottom of the league standing. This is of interest as there are differences between the financial resources available to the clubs and leagues. Based on a review of sport consumer behaviour literature, we propose that four determinants are relevant to a league's attractiveness: stadium atmosphere, international success of the clubs, uniqueness of dominating clubs and perceived competitive balance. A total of 1,404 committed fans of 12 selected football teams from the English Premier League and German Bundesliga participated in the study. The research model was tested using partial least squares. The results show that the determinants significantly predict perceived attractiveness, and that even fans of financially privileged and successful clubs concede that perceived competitive balance is necessary for attractiveness to be maintained.
European Sport Management Quarterly
Sport and Leisure Management