Racial Discrimination in English Professional Football: Evidence from an Empirical Analysis of Players' Career Progression
John A. Goddard
University of Wales, Swansea
John O.S. Wilson
University of St. Andrews
Cambridge Journal of Economics, Vol. 33, Issue 2, pp. 295-316, 2009
A novel test for racial discrimination in English professional football is presented, based on an assessment of the effect of race on footballers' labour market transition probabilities. Career progression is observed over five-year intervals within the period 1986-2001. Transition probabilities are estimated using a three-equation model with initial divisional status, retention and divisional transition as dependent variables. Retention depends on age, divisional status, first-team appearances, playing position and birthplace. Divisional transition depends on age, first-team appearances and playing position. Black players tend to be employed by teams of higher divisional status and have higher retention probabilities, suggesting a form of hiring discrimination affecting the process of becoming a professional.
Keywords: Professional football, Racial discrimination, Transition probabilities
JEL Classification: J24, J44, J62Accepted Paper Series
Date posted: March 12, 2009
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