Van Vugt, M., Hart, C., & Leader, T. Does stability foster team performance? A European Football (Soccer) Inquiry. Manuscript submitted for publication.
Does team stability promote performance? This archival research investigated the impact of player stability (vs. change) on the performance of professional football (soccer) teams in the English Premier League and in the Italian Serie A. As predicted, the more stable teams outperformed the less stable teams on a range of performance indicators (i.e., league ranking, aggregate points goals scored, goals conceded). These effects could not be attributed to other obvious factors such as the past performance or wealth of a team, average contract length or average player age. Additionally, manager stability exerts an independent, though weaker effect, on team performance. Discussion speculates about the benefits of stability in competitive team settings involving high levels of coordination and cooperation.