Professional football is a business worth billions of euros. Football clubs earn money by selling TV broadcasting rights and tickets as well as through marketing, merchandising, sponsorship, transfer of players, etc. For years the linkage between public authorities and professional sports has been very strong, often including financial advantages in the form of State aid. As professional football clubs derive their revenues and participate in acquiring football players throughout the EU, State aid is liable to affect intra-EU trade. However, until 2013, it seemed that the European Commission was unwilling to apply the EU State aid rules not only to professional football, but to sports in general. This changed abruptly in July 2016 when the Commission concluded numerous in-depth investigations regarding unlawful State aid to professional football clubs in Spain and the Netherlands.