Contributing to the lively debate on closed leagues (North American model) versus open leagues (European model) in professional sport league, this paper aims at determining the drivers of promotion and relegation in the major European soccer leagues. Using a large and original dataset (for example: club’s link with a billionaire, club listed in the stock market, etc.) and logistic regressions, our results show that institutional factors matter to settle in the elite. It also indicates that open leagues system in European soccer championships is de facto very similar to closed leagues system. Furthermore, our forecasting model can be of interest for soccer investors or bookmakers.