The enduring struggle over professionalism in English football from 1883 to 1963: a Marxist analysis
AbstractThis thesis takes a Marxist perspective on English football from 1883 to 1963 and charts the struggle between those who governed, the Football Association and the Football League and those whom they governed, the professional players. This was not only a struggle between opposing groups but also a struggle between opposing classes operating within the society/industry of English football. A struggle that was to endure as a result of the diametrically opposed ideologies each class held about the presence and/or purpose of the professional player. For the purpose of this research the cotton industry was used as a comparator from which developments in English football could be gauged to suggest that professional players had managed to successfully overcome the ideological domination of the governing bodies of English football, thus instigating a working-class revolution. Marx’s prediction for a workers’ revolution may not have materialised for the ordinary working class during the nineteenth century, however, this thesis suggests that such a revolution did occur in English football, post-1961, when the professional players and their Union representatives, the PFA, successfully fought for the removal of the maximum wage and the retain-and-transfer system.
Marangos, Hugo (2017) The enduring struggle over professionalism in English football from 1883 to 1963: a Marxist analysis University of Southampton Doctoral Thesis , 201pp.