The Labour Market for Football Players in a Single European Market

The Labour Market for Football Players in a Single European Market

A seminar at the Clore Management Centre,
Room G04

6 – 9pm, Monday 31st March 2003

Given by:

Trevor Watkins, Sports Lawyer, Clarke-Willmott


The last decade has seen significant change in the business of football. Critically, long regarded as commodities to be bought and sold players have seen their power and influence grow as the Bosman ruling confirmed that labour law applied to football as much as to other business. Now, with the introduction of a new transfer system, the threat of further challenge from European Union (EU) intervention, and crippling debts affecting most professional clubs, Trevor Watkins considers the practical and legal framework under which the market for players operates within the European Community, and assesses the prospects for future radical change in the regulation of players’ employment contract status.

Further Reading

  • Arnedt, R.B. European Union Law and Football Nationality restrictions: the economics and politics of the Bosman Decision (1998).
  • Balog v Royal Charleroi SC ASBL, C-264/98, 29.03.01
  • Bosman, 415/93 [1996] 1 CMLR 645
  • Caiger, A. Whither the Transfer System? (2000) SLSA.
  • Caiger, A. and Gardiner, S. Professional Sport in the EU: Regulation and Re-regulation (2000), The Hague, TMC Asser Press; including Caiger, A. and O’Leary, J. A new rainbow? The promise of change in professional football (2000).
  • Deloitte and Touche. Annual Report on Football Finance (2002); and also guide to England’s Premier Clubs (2002).
  • FIFA Circular no 769, Revised FIFA Regulations for the status and transfer of players (2001).
  • The Football League. Preserving the Benefits of the Transfer System (2000).
  • Fordham Corporate Law Institute. Twenty-sixth Annual Conference on International Antitrust Law and Policy (1999).
  • Gardiner, S and ORS. Sports Law (Second Edition) (2001). Cavendish Publishing.
  • Grayson, E. Sport and the Law (2000). Butterworths.
  • Mcauley. They think it’s all over. [2002] 7 ECLR 331.
  • OECD. Competition Issues Related to Sports (1997) OECD/GD (97) 128.
  • Parrish, R. The future of Sports Regulation in the European Union (2002). Delivered to LLM International Sports Law Degree, Anglia Sports Law Research Centre, the Hague March 2002.
  • Professional Footballers Association and ORS. The Football Transfer System: Interim Briefing Paper from the English Football Authorities (2000).
  • Taylor, J Competition Matters SLAP January/February 1999 @ 10.
  • UEFA Report of the Task Force Sub Committee on Economic Matters (2000).
  • Weatherill, Do Sporting associations make law or are they merely subject to it? EBL Rev 217 (July/August 1998).

The seminar is free. For further details contact: Sean Hamil Football Governance Research Centre E.mail: Tel: 020-7631 6763.

Copies of the handout notes will be available on request, contact for details

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