Mutuality for Football Clubs? Lessons from the Financial Sector.
Adams, Andrew T
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The mutualisation of two English third division football clubs in 2001 and the creation of a number of supporters' trusts has offered hope to supporters of many larger clubs who see mutual status as protection from the vagaries of shareholder ownership and private control. This paper assesses whether mutuality would be of economic benefit for football clubs, drawing heavily on the experiences of mutuals in the financial sector. The economic case rests on the distinctive feature of customer loyalty to a club, which will usually be much stronger than loyalty to a financial institution. However, club members must expect to shoulder some financial risk.