Evolution of the football industry and the increasing relevance of youth academies as a management tool in football clubs management due to the new rules of FFP(Financial Fair Play)


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The goal of this research is to analyse the various forms of management of the youth sector at European level. It will analyse strengths and weaknesses and, finally, define an ideal model of management of the youth sector.
This paper will start from the evolution of the football industry and its passage from pure “fun”, to the important role that established and listed enterprises actually play in the financial markets. The first part will address the development and governance of football clubs and the rules issued by UEFA that oversee the management of football clubs at European level: the Financial Fair Play. FFP has as its main goal the introduction of discipline and rationality in clubs finance, pressure reduction on wages and transfers and to limit the effects of inflation. FFP also tries to encourage clubs to rely only on their own profits, making long term investments on the youth academy(not under FFP rules) and infrastructures. Moreover it also tries to protect the long-term sustainability of European football and ensure the on time payment of debts by the clubs. Moreover it will be constituted by a thorough investigation on football clubs youth academies with particular attention on the best practices at European level and Italy’s inability to keep up with the top leagues in Europe on this matter. As mentioned before the aim of this paper is to try and define an idyllic management of youth academies through an in-depth study of the new UEFA youth academies development plans like the Youth league and the UEFA AtTrick programme because In the scenario that characterizes modern football, investment in youth is a strategic lever of primary importance. The organization of youth sports has become one of the areas of activity able to contribute effectively to the economic management of sports clubs.
Due to the evolution of the football industry towards a more business oriented approach and the introduction of financial fair play (FFP) Professional football clubs are discovering the importance of Youth academies as a strategic management tool, is it possible to identify and ideal management model in order to create benefits for the club?
PROPOSED RESEARCH METHOD(S): Analysis of quantitative and qualitative data retrieved through interviews documents and observations. When analysing the different models of youth academies management the case study method will be adopted due to its better suitability regarding this research. Interviews will take place with important figurers in Italian football, which will try to address the on growing importance of youth academies and how they are going to implement them in regards of the new FFP regulation. The choice of conducting interviews has the base of my research in due to the fact the still little information has been released on Italy on this topic, in order to extrapolate a best practice on youth academy management
12000 word minimum for the whole dissertation



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