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The Impact of Uncertainty on Fan Interest Surrounding Multiple Outcomes in Open European Football Leagues

Pedro Garcia-del-Barrio and J Reade

No em-dp2023-02, Economics Discussion Papers from Department of Economics, University of Reading

Abstract: We introduce a new source of information to evaluate the importance of uncertainty in driving demand for particular types of entertainment events. We use web searches via Google, and consider various dimensions of uncertainty of outcome in sporting events. Most saliently, we consider whether the complete removal of uncertainty surrounding the winner of a competition, something that often happens before European soccer leagues have completed, reduces interest. We find that the decrease in interest is significant, but that it is mitigated by increased interest in secondary prizes in these league competitions: qualification for European competitions, and avoiding relegation. We conclude by affirming that such a diversified structure of competition, replete with an open structure of promotion and relegation, is desirable in the context of league competitions such as those in Europe that do not have a proment play-off system to conclude the season.

Keywords: global sports, outcome certainty; Google trends; competitions’ multiple prizes; event analysis (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: J24 J33 J71 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 20 pages
Date: 2023-01-11
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-big, nep-cul and nep-spo
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