Author: Richard Parrish

The increasing commercialisation of sport raises important questions concerning regulation. The development of the European Union (EU) and the internationalization of sporting competition have added an international dimension to this debate. Yet sport is not only a business, it is a social and cultural activity. Can regulation at the EU level reconcile this tension? Adopting a distinctive legal and political analysis, this book argues that the EU is receptive to the claim of sport for special treatment before the law. It investigates the birth of EU sports law and policy by examining the impact of the Bosman ruling and other important European Court of Justice decisions, the relationship between sport and EU competition law, focusing particularly on the broadcasting of sport, the organization of sport and the international transfer system, and the relationship between sport and the EU Treaty, focusing in particular on the impact of the Amsterdam and Nice declarations on sport and the significance of the Helsinki report on sport. This text raises questions concerning the appropriate theoretical tools for analysing European integration.

Richard Parrish

seen the birth of a discrete area of sports law operating within the context of a more holistic EU sports policy. EU sports law and policy The Bosman ruling was a turning point for sport. It led to the creation of the sports policy subsystem. Actors unhappy at the economic Single Market approach the ECJ adopted in relation to sport, co-ordinated their activity to seek greater protection for sport from the application of EU law. As each coalition possessed the ability to undermine each other other’s deep and policy core belief systems, coalition mediation took place

in Sports law and policy in the European Union
Richard Parrish

should be included as an area of formal competence in the Treaty. The Bosman setback 1995–1997 The 1995 Bosman ruling represented a set back for many socio-cultural actors despite the Larive report’s desire to see the lifting of restrictions placed on the movement of sportsmen and women. Bosman confirmed the predominance of the EU’s market-based definition of sport at the expense of the social definition. In short, the Bosman approach was inconsistent with the Adonnino agenda. Reconciling sport and law 167 The Pack report on the Role of the European Union in the

in Sports law and policy in the European Union
Richard Parrish

1 The birth of EU sports law and policy Despite the absence of a Treaty base, the EU currently operates a sports policy. This policy is the product of activity within the EU’s sports policy subsystem, a subsystem formed in response to the infamous Bosman ruling. Prior to that the EU operated a highly polarised and fragmented sports policy characterised by two conflicting policy approaches to sport. First, the EU took a fleeting regulatory interest in sport. The ECJ and the Competition Policy Directorate intervened in sport to correct free movement and

in Sports law and policy in the European Union
Richard Parrish

the Treaty provisions relating to the free movement of workers and the right of establishment and the freedom to provide services. The third section analyses the significance of the ECJ rulings in Walrave, Donà and Heylens. Section four examines the impact of the Bosman ruling and section five reviews the case law in Deliège and Lehtonen. The final section draws some conclusions. Sport and the European Court of Justice 81 The European Court of Justice and European integration Most writers agree that the ECJ’s activities have made an important contribution to

in Sports law and policy in the European Union
Neil McNaughton

overruled by the ECJ. Furthermore, laws which have been passed by the parliaments of member states may be set aside if the Court decides that it does not conform to EU law or one of the treaties. On the other hand many individuals and organisations have cause to be grateful to the Court for the establishment of their rights. In some of its most celebrated cases the Court has, thus, confirmed the right of professional footballers to move freely from one club to another when out of contract (the famous ‘Bosmanruling), equalising the pension rights of men and women

in Understanding British and European political issues
Richard Parrish

not always easy. Some of the most important are as follows: Legal norms The build up of legal norms is crucial to the construction of a policy environment (governance regime) within which policy evolution takes place. In particular, ECJ jurisprudence or the Competition Policy Directorates quasi-jurisprudence shapes this environment. The relationship between the ECJ’s work and that of the Commission is very close. The Commission’s use of the Court’s Cassis de Dijon judgment to promote mutual recognition is one example.6 The close relationship between the Bosman

in Sports law and policy in the European Union
Richard Parrish

workers they choose, they also impose restrictions on the ability of players to seek alternative employment at another club. The Bosman ruling established that out of contract international transfer payments and nationality quotas were incompatible with Article 39. EU law therefore goes some way to protect the right of free movement for players in the EU. The rights of clubs to freely employ labour was not however guaranteed and some restrictions on players remained after Bosman. Although the ECJ did not answer the question concerning the compatibility of the

in Sports law and policy in the European Union