Title: Only genuine fans need apply: an organisational analysis of the English Football Association's response to football supporter stereotypes

Authors: John Hughson, Emma Poulton

Addresses: School of Physical Education, University of Otago, P.O. Box 56, Dunedin, New Zealand. ' Department of Sport, School of Applied Social Sciences, University of Durham, House of Sport, South End Road, Durham DH1 3TG, UK

Abstract: This paper presents an organisational study of The Football Association (FA) in England with particular reference to its establishment of an officially sanctioned supporters group for the national team, largely in response to the media reportage on, and the political reaction to, fan behaviour. Institutional theory is advanced as a means of explaining The FA|s relationship with the media and the Home Office and its resultant organisational response to the administering of England fans. It is argued that The FA, in its organisational operation, unwittingly lends support to the marginalisation of a section of society – the rough white working class – in which the |hooligan| element is believed to reside.

Keywords: Football Association; FA; institutional theory; Home Office; England; media; stereotyping; cultural fabric; football supporters; fan behaviour; hooligans; sport management; official supporters groups.

DOI: 10.1504/IJSMM.2007.011391

International Journal of Sport Management and Marketing, 2007 Vol.2 No.1/2, pp.69 - 82

Published online: 30 Nov 2006 *

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