Working in football can be an excellent way to earn a living, particularly if you are passionate about the sport.
The game tends to attract people who have a shared passion and that’s not always the case in other sectors.
The business of football has changed massively in the last 30 years, with developments in media and stadiums providing the perfect platform for growth.
The passion of fans has also had a major impact on the sport, with people demanding a far higher level of interaction with their favourite players and teams than in the past.
Leaders in other industries have now latched onto the benefits of hiring professionals from the football industry, as they tend to be hard-working, thrive in high-pressure situations and work well with other staff members.
While one negative of working in football is the unsociable hours many people in the industry have to undertake, the financial rewards and job satisfaction far outweighs the sacrifices you need to make.
Read on to find out more about some of the best jobs in football.
Football offers a plethora of opportunities to work as a journalist. Whether you want to find a job writing about the sport or working on the broadcast side of things, there are numerous ways for people to get involved in the world’s greatest game.
Undertaking a sports journalism degree provides a perfect platform to progress into the industry in areas such as digital media, print newspapers or magazines and television or radio broadcasts.
Most programmes also offer internship opportunities so that you can experience a variety of potential workplaces, find out which you are most interested in and potentially secure future employment.
Many modern football journalists possess multi-media skills that allow them to work across numerous mediums, potentially opening more doors than if they had focused on just one single area of the industry.
Football journalism is a massively competitive sector to break into. It is crucial to work on creating your own content while building yourself as a brand. Build a loyal following on social media and gather as many contacts as you possibly can. Get a leg up on the game by writing for a football blog here.
Analysing data to improve performance has become a hugely important part of football. Clubs monitor a vast range of statistics to improve their operations by utilising a variety of collection methods to monitor and enhance player performance.
Clubs worldwide now employ data analysts, sports scientists, nutritionists and researchers who are tasked with improving every aspect of player performance. Much like journalism, obtaining a degree in a relevant field can be a great route into football.
Over the past few years we have become used to a data analysis in football – numbers and percentages relating to shots on goal, distance covered, tackles won and many other areas are monitored to try and give clubs a competitive edge over their rivals.
With the help of cameras and wearable tech, players can now be monitored on the pitch and in training so that formations, fatigue, heart rate and acceleration can all be tracked precisely. Anything statistically calculable can be collated and analysed in order to establish the skill or failure of a particular player.
Administrators are responsible for carrying out tasks across a wide range of functions within sports clubs and organisations.
For instance, you could be focusing your efforts on marketing, fundraising, purchasing or general administration tasks. Alternatively, you may be responsible for organising and scheduling events, managing budgets or overseeing the recruitment and training of staff.
Opportunities to work as an administrator in football are available in clubs (amateur and professional), governance bodies and education, and you will essentially be responsible for making sure everything is run efficiently and cost-effectively.
Employers will require candidates to have a strong degree in any discipline, although a recognised qualification in sports administration, business management, sports development or marketing is the common preference of most organisations.
Prior experience of organising sporting events, administrative work and sports activities is useful, especially as there is likely to be intense competition for a limited amount of jobs.
The road to becoming an elite-level coach is tough, but it is a pathway that is open to everyone with the determination to succeed. Candidates don’t necessarily need to have played the game at a high level to become a top class coach.
Universities provide coaching and development programmes designed to arm students with the skills, experiences and networks that will establish their graduates at the forefront of football coaching and development practice.
The Football Association also offers coaching courses for people of all experience levels and whether you want a career at the upper echelons of the game or something at grassroots level, the route to success is transparent and open to everyone.
For coaches who want to ply their trade at the very top of the game, a UEFA licence is a necessity. Various clubs and associations offer these courses and, in most cases, the possession of a Level Two football coaching qualification is the minimum entry requirement for the ‘B’ licence.
Candidates will need to provide evidence of practical experience in the coaching of 11-a-side teams to gain entry onto a course, as well as a passion for the game.
To coach at Premier League and Championship clubs, a UEFA ‘A’ licence is usually required. Candidates usually need to have a complete UEFA ‘B’ licence to gain entry onto a course, which needs to have been acquired within the last five years.
While the pathway to a career in top-level football coaching is complex, it is a path that anyone with determination and a passion for the game can undertake.
Coaching is a highly rewarding and enjoyable career, and by acquiring the necessary FA and UEFA qualifications, anyone with a love of football and a desire to coach it can forge a rewarding career.