April 4, 2011 § 11 Comments
What is a football club?
Let’s first adopt a strictly material attitude and suggest that a football club is the sum of all its parts: players, staff, stadia, training facilities, badge, whatever. So Manchester United is Sir Alex Ferguson plus Wayne Rooney plus Ryan Giggs plus Paul Scholes … plus red shirts, white knickerbockers, and an eye-watering soul-sapping maelstrom of debt. Or, in abstract terms, any football club F consists of p1, p2, p3 … pn, where p is a component part of F and n is the total number of distinct component parts. Such a solution is satisfying in one regard, in that it makes a certain intuitive sense to suggest that a thing is made up of its make-up. It has a coldly ontological appeal. And it can apply just as simply to the more abstract concepts we often ascribe to a football club as well; the character of a club is just the interplay of the characters of all those component parts. « Read the rest of this entry »