Football needs to stop scoring own goals

It can’t have escaped your notice that the latest Premier League football season began this week, accompanied as it was by saturation media coverage. Sadly, much of the media attention has been focused off the pitch rather than on it.

The allegations against former Cardiff City manager Malky Mackay are just the latest in a long line of scandals to hit the so called “beautiful game”.  Even Barcelona FC, long held up as an example of all that is right and proper in football, have been hit with a transfer ban after being found guilty of signing irregularities involving teenage players.  

And yet, despite all the scandals, the money keeps rolling in. TV companies are more willing than ever to pay astronomical sums for the right to screen live games while premier league grounds were over 95 per cent full last season, despite sky (or should that be Sky?) high ticket prices.

Reputation Management is an issue which football needs to urgently address at every level. Football could do a lot worse than look at the example of the public sector where many organisations such as local authorities have turned round their reputations as a result of carefully planned and targeted communications work.  

Football is vitally important to the social, economic and cultural well being of the country, but the ball will surely burst if the game’s leaders don’t start getting their act together.

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