Honors Theses

Date of Award


Document Type

Undergraduate Thesis


Croft Institute for International Studies

First Advisor

Miguel Centellas

Relational Format



This project seeks to examine the relationship between economic history, soccer, and economic institutions in countries who have attained varying levels of success on the soccer field and economically. The work of several influential scholars in recent decades has drawn attention to the need for a shift in the goal for economic achievement from industrialization to institutional effectiveness. This study develops a model to further understand the relationship between economic achievement and soccer success. It then includes case studies of three countries from the model in order to further understand the impact of the institutions that have a significant presence in the model’s most successful country. This study finds a noteworthy correlation between soccer performance and national GDP and population. Furthermore, case studies of Germany, Croatia, and Serbia reaffirm the importance of economic institutions and their contribution to economic success and soccer success.


A thesis presented in partial fulfillment of the requirements for completion of the Bachelor of Arts degree in International Studies from the Croft Institute for International Studies and the Sally McDonnell Barksdale Honors College.



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