Sports have become a fruitful field of research. First, studying sports is interesting in itself. Second, there are similarities between phenomena in sports and in other fields, such as labor economics (Kahn 2000, Szymanski 2003). One advantage of sports research is the wide availability and the relatively high frequency of data, such as match results in soccer. In this chapter, we will use such data and investigate the effect of an in-season coach dismissal of a professional soccer club on in-season performances of soccer teams. Given the resemblance between the position of a head-coach and a CEO (TerWeel 2011), this question is interesting from a business perspective as well. Kuper and Szymanski (2010) indicate doubt about the impact of a soccer manager on team performance. Anderson and Sally (2013) argue that the influence of a soccer manager is nonnegligible. Most previous studies show that short-term performances do not improve as a result of a change in head-coach (Van Ours and Van Tuijl (2016) provide a recent overview of previous studies). Previous studies use various methods and data sets from different countries and different time periods. Koning (2003) shows that performances do not improve after the replacement of a head-coach. He uses data from the first tier of Dutch professional soccer (“Eredivisie”). Koning takes into account the heterogeneity of opponents prior to and posterior to a change of head-coach. Furthermore, Bruinshoofd and Ter Weel (2003) and Van Ours and Van Tuijl (2016), also studying the highest professional soccer league in the Netherlands, show that a sequence of bad performances is often followed by a recovery, irrespective of the replacement of the head-coach. This points at a so-called regression to the mean, that is, if a sequence of bad performances is random, better results will follow automatically although performance has not improved. Thus, the conclusions of the these studies are similar concerning the effectiveness of an in-season head-coach dismissal. However, the setup of the of Methods and empirical analysis differs. And, although the authors all use data from the highest Dutch professional soccer league, their sample periods differ.,
Department of Applied Economics

Besters, L.M. (Lucas M.), Van Ours, J.C. (Jan C.), & Van Tuijl, M.A. (Martin A.). (2017). Effectiveness of in-season coach dismissal. In Handbook of Statistical Methods and Analyses in Sports (pp. 385–400). doi:10.1201/9781315166070