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The German Bundesliga clubs and their future : an outlook on the robustness of the clubs in times of Covid-19 : [sports management study]

  • The Coronavirus has shocked the world, affects our health and social lives. Not least, its impact on the economy is dramatic. Even for the prime football leagues, the effective lockdown in many European countries has shaken up the business outlook. The decision to stop the 1. and 2. Bundesliga has blurred the sight into the future of the League. Therefore, this study aims at contributing to the question how robust the German Bundesliga clubs are—in both financial and management dimensions. Here, we provide you with an overview to help the reader to understand “how to read” this study which reflects the information as of May 14th, 2020. First, we understand our study as a stimulation for discussion in order to support German Football on its way to becoming the best in the world. We would like to make our contribution with concrete recommendations. During our research, we first considered the market of a professional German Football club and benchmarked the German Bundesliga to the other European top leagues. In the next step, we analyzed the financial situation of all clubs in order to understand the challenges the clubs are currently facing. We put a special emphasis on the indicators of financial liquidity and solvency since these are the critical factors when aiming for financial robustness. However, we believe that it is not sufficient to solely base the club´s future robustness on a financial basis. Thus, we looked in three additional dimensions, which there are management quality, player talent development, and of course sporting success. By doing so, we develop a differentiated scoring model that takes all these dimensions into account and results in one overall robustness score for each club. In order to relatively compare the scores of all clubs, we display the results in a ranking table, that is familiar for football fans. The underlying scoring system of our study is based on publicly available data, which is mainly comprised by annual reports of football clubs. Additionally, we gave every club the chance to participate in our study and provide us with the latest data by asking for support via emails, that all clubs received twice. 9 clubs leveraged the opportunity and supported us with personal interviews and additional data. We hope that this study will be seen as an invitation to discuss the robustness of German football. We would be pleased if our recommendations were to support the decision-makers. We wish you many new insights when reading our study!

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Document Type:Report
Author:Henning ZülchORCiD, Philipp OttensteinORCiD, Ewald Manz
Chairs and Professorships:Chair of Accounting and Auditing
Page Number:28
Date of first Publication:2020/05/14
Tag:Covid-19; Crisis; Football club; German Bundeslige
Content Focus:Practitioner Audience
Licence (German):License LogoUrheberrechtlich geschützt