PFA Business School

Postgraduate Diploma

Global Football Business Management

Football clubs are experiencing significant growth across multiple areas, including club commercial management (such as ticketing, VIP, and football tourism), operational management, digital transformation management, sponsorship, and internationalisation.

Part of this growth is attributed to the international expansion actively pursued by football clubs in welcoming foreign investors and by competition organisers in raising their profile in other countries and continents. This strategy aims to make football clubs and competitions more attractive to global sponsors. In short, we are witnessing a unique time in the football industry in which great strides are being made at a dizzying pace. 

Moreover, global markets across a range of sectors are becoming ever more competitive. This challenging environment calls for more complex solutions and rapid professionalisation of the entire football industry.  Aware of this situation, the PFA Business School, with the help of the Programme Co-Directors David Dein and Maheta Molango and a wide selection of the best-in-class Executives and Business Football managers from around the world have designed the Postgraduate Diploma in Football Business Management.

The course covers complex and technical subjects not previously covered in a specialised training programme and will help future professionals operate in the global football industry.

Course Co-Director: David Dein

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Course Objectives and Target Audience

Objectives

  • To acquire in-depth knowledge of all specialist areas related to football club business management
  • To learn through a practical approach that illustrates all theoretical aspects with meaningful examples
  • Gain an understanding of the best practices and most innovative sports management strategies to achieve the best sports and economic results with limited resources

Target Audience

  • Current and former members of the PFA
  • Professionals working in football clubs and sports organisations involved in business development and management
  • Professionals working in football clubs and sports organisations involved in business development and management

Course Content

Leadership Development Module
  • Self-leadership
  • Decision making
  • Team and conflict management
  • Managing intercultural environments
  • Negotiation, Influence and persuasion
  • Time management and prioritisation
Module 1 - Football Club Finance Analysis

The football industry and club ownership

Football institutions and their regulations:

  • Football associations and competitions
  • Football federation and government institutions
  • Conflicts between institutions, club governance and relations with stakeholders

Club management models and organisational structures: roles and responsibilities

Stakeholder mapping and the relationship with the president, board of directors, sport director, shareholders, agents, etc.

Club ownership models and how they affect club business management

The business of audiovisual rights

Football club financial and revenues analysis

Analysis of accounting information, with a special focus on investments, revenues and cashflow:

  • Income statement / P&L
  • Cash flow statement
  • Balance sheet

Main financial ratios

Multi-club ownership management

Economic control and Financial Fair Play regulation

Football club governance

EDI management

Module 2 - Compliance and Business Strategy Management

Legal aspects of football club management

  • Football regulation: FIFA, UEFA and The FA
  • Sports companies and corporate governance
  • Regulations on the Status and Transfer of Players
  • Player international taxation and mobility regulation
  • Professional football contracts, labour law and players' trade union
  • Legal aspects of exploiting audio visual rights, sponsoring and image rights
  • Dispute resolution within sports

Football club strategy management

  • Strategic Business and Sport Due Diligence
  • Mission statement: what kind of club we want to become?
  • What do fans expect from us?
  • SWOT analysis of a football club
  • Definition of the business development objectives
  • Balanced scorecard and KPIs
  • Strategy formulation and definition of sporting objectives
  • Football club strategies in different teams

Football club HR management

  • People management at sports clubs
  • Club culture
  • Sizing and organisational structure
  • Compensation and salary structures
  • Recruiting and talent management

Internationalisation of a football club

Module 3 - Football Operations Management

Club marketing and commercial management

  • Fan engagement
  • Football club commercial strategy
  • Marketing and sponsoring strategy
  • Ticketing and VIPs
  • Sport events management
  • Hospitality and stadium facilities business

Event management

Club operations management

Pre-season club management

  • Ticketing and commercial strategy
  • Sponsoring negotiations
  • Pre-season planning
  • Transfer window planning
  • End-of-season report to owners and board
  • CAPEX strategy
  • Remuneration packages and contracts for players and coaches
  • Club budget management
  • People management: Appoint appropriate personnel, team manager and coaches, fitness coaches, and other team support staff to ensure smooth running on game days.

During season - Sport management

  • Sport Directorship
  • The manager and coaching team
  • Scouting
  • The Academy
  • Male and female team management
  • Medical, physiotherapy and rehab management
  • Psychology department management
  • Football analytics
  • The Sport Project
Module 4 - Communication and Investment in Football

Communication and public relations

Managing internal communication:

  • With the owners, the board of directors and the CEO
  • With the sport management team, the manager and the coaches
  • With players and agents

Managing external communication:

  • With the media
  • With other clubs
  • With the player’s environment

Innovation and digital transformation

Investments, debt and equity

Transfer of players

  • Negotiation with players, agents and coaches
  • Licensing and player registration regulations

Club financial planning

  • Economic valuation of the club’s assets
  • Development of economic projections
  • Financial planning
  • Definition of the business development objectives

Investing in stadium and facilities 

M&A deals in football clubs

Club due diligence process

  • Financial due diligence
  • Legal and tax due diligence
  • Labour Due Diligence

The IPO Process

Acquisition contracts

CSR foundation

Course Delivery

Course Length

Course Length

The course runs for two academic years - nine months per year. 

Languages

Language

This course is taught in English.                                                                 

Date of Course

Schedule

Part time: Two academic years 

- One virtual session every two weeks, each lasting two hours

- Four face-to-face sessions per year

Location

Location

Learning will take place at the PFA London venue and virtual campus.

Accreditation

Accreditation

On completion students will received a “Postgraduate Diploma in Global Football Business Management” awarded by the University of Portsmouth in collaboration with the PFA Business School.

Fees and Grants

Fees & Grants

The programme admission fee is £5,900 per year. Current and former PFA members can apply for a discount of 15% and a grant of £2,000 per year.

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