Implications of the Bosman ruling for football transfer markets


  • Robert Simmons

    1. Robert Simmons is Lecturer in Economics at the University of Salford, where he has taught since 1986. He is the author of several published papers in labour economics and the economics of professional team sports, including‘The demand for English league football: a club-level analysis’, Applied economics. February 1996.Helpful comments from David Forrest are acknowledged, without implication.
    Search for more papers by this author


This paper seeks to assess the implications of the 1995 Judgement of the European Court of Justice on the case of Jean-Marc Bosman for the operation of football transfer markets. Although it is inevitable that many more out-of-contract footballers will be able to move between dubs without payment of transfer fees to the selling club, it is argued that there remains a role for transfer markets in professional football, with compensation to selling clubs for training, development and replacement of players.