Football And The Media Essay

Length: 8 pages Sources: 4 Subject: Sports Type: Essay Paper: #40037141 Related Topics: Paparazzi, National Football League, World Cup, Sports Media
Excerpt from Essay :

¶ … Football Sold its Soul to the Media?

The increase in investments in football has been considered as a force of good since it has revolutionized various aspects of the game for the better. In actual sense, money has revolutionized football by contributing to its development as a globalized sport that connects people together. These investments have also been characterized by the increased inclusion of the media, especially television in the football. Media has played a crucial role in changing the face of football just like increased investments in this sport. However, there have been numerous concerns and questions in the recent past on whether football has sold its soul to the media, which is increasingly changing the face of football. Actually, the increased use of the media and its impact on football has remained a major controversial issue. While this trend has been associated with some major benefits, it has been characterized with controversies and assertions that football has sold it soul to the media.

History of Football

In the old days, football was not broadcasted on television and other media to the extent that it is today (Stumpo, 2012). During this period, fans would have to attend the live game or wait until the end in order to know the final score either through radio announcements or on printed newspaper the following day. Football scores were not available on the Internet as it is today where people can receive live updates of events and scores on the pitch.

Generally, football has a long and detailed history that is largely traced back to England where it was developed and codified. Actually, the contemporary worldwide game of football was first formulated and developed in London, England in 1863. The sport was initially developed as a means or tool of uniting English public schools and universities. Nonetheless, there is evidence that team football games started in English schools as early as 1581, though the modern worldwide game of football was codified in 1863. Therefore, England is considered as the home of the oldest football clubs and the oldest football competition throughout the world.

Since its inception, football has remained the most popular sport in the history of mankind and continued to experience considerable developments and transformations. The constant development and transformation of this sport has largely been attributed to its increased popularity throughout the world. One of the major developments in football is the inclusion of the media, particularly television. The sport was first broadcasted live on television in the United Kingdom in 1937 by the British Broadcasting Corporation or BBC ("History of Football on TV," n.d.). The first football game to be televised was a specially organized friendly match between Arsenal and Arsenal Reserves at Highbury, London. This was followed by live screening of international football and the FA Cup final the following year by British Broadcasting Corporation. The first World Cup tournament was screened live in the United Kingdom in 1954 whereas ITV started to broadcast live matches in 1955 from the newly-created European Cup.

Following these ground-breaking events, television has remained a crucial part of the global game of football. The initial years of the use of television in football was basically to reach out to a wider audience that would otherwise not attend the game or watch it live. Moreover, television was primarily a platform that would promote the growth of the sport through increasing its popularity worldwide. Football fans or supporters considered the use of television as a platform for them to keep up-to-date with the events in the game.

Development of Football

As previously mentioned, in the early years of its inception, football was a sport that was formulated and developed as means of unifying English public schools and universities. Similar to other sports, football played a significant role in cultural life in the early days. Actually, football was a major part of England's cultural history and contributed to a sense of national identity and pride during its early years. During these years, football was part of a culture of self-development and growth, pattern of famous festivity, a special form of entertainment and a means of promoting moral education.

However, the sport was largely popular among the elite and was associated with increased violence and lawlessness to an extent that it was initially prohibited in certain places in England where it was first formulated and developed. Despite the continued problem of violence and lawlessness that characterized football in its early years, its attracted widespread popularity to an extent that it was used in various places for different reasons and purposes.

In the past few decades, football has undergone several developments and transformations that have contributed to its major changes in the modern society as compared to the early days. The sport has changed to an extent that it is now more than a sport since it is currently a brand and...


The increased globalization and popularity of this sport is attributed to the fact that it is currently watched and loved by billions of people worldwide and has emerged as a billion dollar business and industry (Bayley, 2013). As compared to the early days, football in the modern society is increasingly commercialized through increased investments by companies and individuals. The massive investments and tremendous impact of the media on football has contributed to concerns that major investors are destroying the roots and soul of the game. These money-making mandarins are accused of destroying the game through constantly seeking for means of globalizing, commercializing, and sanitizing the game.

Actually, football has entered into an era or period of spending giants and more investments by private investors and media companies. One of the most significant negative impacts of this trend is that the fans are no longer a major consideration in efforts to develop the game. These investors and spending giants seem to increasingly ignore fans with regards to how the game is run and developed. In essence, the control and running of football in the contemporary society is primarily based on money and the power of the media, particularly television. Therefore, the injection of huge amounts of money and increased use of television in the sport is gradually creating a sense of danger and uncertainty.

Impact of the Media on Football

Major developments in football in the recent past have been centered on two major factors i.e. The injection of huge amounts of money and increased use of the media, especially television in the game. As previously mentioned, the media was initially a platform for the growth and increased popularity of football. The media had a tremendous impact on the sport by contributing to the increased popularity of football, which in turn resulted in considerable changes and developments of the sport over the years. The media has gradually become a component of popular culture through which it influences football.

One of the ways the media has impacted football is through affecting the way with which people view and understand the game. This is primarily because media coverage of football and other sports is not merely concerned with the game but it certainly continues to make implicit and explicit statements that influence people's perception and understanding of the game (Whannel, 1992, p.2). These statements, which are made through words and pictures, relate to various issues including the position of men and women, sense of nation and class, and relation to other countries.

Secondly, the media has changed the face of sport, especially football in the past three decades together with sponsorship. These changes include shaping kit sponsorship, marketing of football matches, and decisions on where the World Cup tournaments are hosted. The increased media coverage of football has made the sport to become a branch of advertising and public relations, which have changed the face of the game. Third, television and the media in general has become a huge source of revenue for football and other sports because of its ability to draw huge television audiences worldwide. This has in turn created a platform for huge earnings for football through sponsorship deals that generate huge amounts of money. As a result of acting as a huge source of revenue for football, the media has transformed contemporary football by resulting in the emergence of billionaire owners and private investors in this sector. This has allowed several football clubs worldwide to spend unlimited amounts of money on buying the best players rather than promoting the development of young talent or home-grown players.

Negative Impacts of the Media on Football

Despite the previously mentioned positive impacts of the media on football, there are several negative impacts. The negative impacts of the media on football are largely attributed to the fact that it has promoted and attracted external influences on the game. The first negative impact of the media on football is that it's distortion of people's view of some sports personalities, countries or ideas. Media has sometimes distorted people's view regarding sports…

Sources Used in Documents:


Bayley, J 2013, Football Sold its Soul for Money, Backpage Football, viewed 7 January 2015,


Live Football on TV n.d., History of Football on TV, The Ultimate Football TV Guide, 7 January

2015, <>
2015, <>

Cite this Document:

"Football And The Media" (2015, January 07) Retrieved January 23, 2022, from

"Football And The Media" 07 January 2015. Web.23 January. 2022. <>

"Football And The Media", 07 January 2015, Accessed.23 January. 2022,

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