Publications of Hanstad, D. V.

Fra motspiller til medspiller: EU og norsk profesjonell fotball 1995-2010

In 1995, the European Court of Justice’s ruling that professional football had to adhere to EU’s Single Market rules prompted a strong and negative reaction from clubs and associations right across Europe. The Bosman ruling obliged the European Commission to clarify the status of football as a commercial activity, the three key issues being player transfers, quotas for foreign players and commercial media rights. This article explores Norwegian reactions to Bosman and the subsequent development of a new regime for professional football. Initially, Norwegian actors saw the ruling as a threat. However, the Commission soon engaged in a dialogue with UEFA with a view to a compromise that would preserve both EU rules and the values central to Norwegian and European football. Norwegian representation in UEFA’s leadership provided national actors with information and insight into opportunities for adaptation. The article illustrates a form of Europeanization that has received limited attention in the literature on Europeanization: namely mutual adaptation.