Work detail

Cheating Behavior in Football

Author: Mgr. Ján Selep
Year: 2014 - summer
Leaders: doc. PhDr. Michal Bauer Ph.D.
Work type: Finance, Financial Markets and Banking
Language: English
Pages: 68
Awards and prizes: M.A. with distinction from the Dean of the Faculty of Social Sciences for an extraordinarily good masters diploma thesis.
Abstract: In this thesis I provide statistical evidence documenting rigging of football matches in German
long-term championship Bundesliga. For the purpose I use 8326 matches played in top three
German long-term competitions through years 1995 -- 2012. The championship is based on a point
collection in a standings table divided by strict success margins, e.g. title or relegation. The margins
lead to a non-linear incentive structure in which one point is worth more for teams close to the
margin. Uncertainty about the final outcome, however, postpones the equilibrating effect to the last
rounds of a season. I find evidence of increased point earnings as a reaction on relegation margin
closeness at the end of a season. Increased effort of the marginal teams cannot explain the findings
as players exert no better performance in the incentive situation. In the same time, their opponents
with long margin distance decrease their performance. In addition to that I provide evidence on
cheating cooperation proxied by variance of players' performance. The variance does not react on
the incentive situation suggesting that teammates behave unitedly. Performance of referees seems to
exert stable performance with no reaction on teams' incentives. Overall, the results show strong
evidence of systemic point trading in German Bundesliga


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