The PFA has announced the launch of its new player-focused initiative, the PFA Business School, aimed at helping its members prepare for life after football. The programme, led by experts from the world of football, sport, and beyond, is designed to enable players to acquire new skills, discover their potential and unlock new career opportunities within the industry.
Maheta Molango, PFA CEO said: "We strongly believe that football people should hold football jobs, with players occupying key positions that shape the sport's future. An innovative training and personal development programme is necessary to equip players with the tools and knowledge to complement their on-pitch leadership qualities, including decision-making, resilience and discipline.
"Our programmes are adaptable to players' individual needs in terms of schedule and content. Our practical, hands-on approach sets us apart, exposing players to industry experts who provide valuable insights into running successful football clubs on and off the field. In addition, with an international outlook, we have attracted speakers with global experience and expertise who will help us produce the next generation of leaders within the game."
The PFA Business School includes over 75 lecturers from within professional football, sport and the media. Collectively they will share their experiences in managing strategy in top football clubs worldwide, representing 50 clubs from 13 different countries, including AS Roma, Sevilla FC, AC Milan, Atlanta United and Red Bull Leipzig.
Andoni Zubizarreta, a former Spanish international, FC Barcelona player, and Sporting Director who is now a Co-Director at the PFA Business School, said: "Successful management in a football environment demands personnel who possess a comprehensive understanding of decision-making in the sporting arena and within the structure of a football club. It requires a global perspective, willingness, and ability to adapt to the industry's rapidly changing landscape. Additionally, candidates must stay informed about emerging opportunities to stay ahead of the game. WATCH VIDEO
"The programmes on the new PFA Business School will prepare candidates with the skills and knowledge to succeed, enabling them to operate with the highest levels of efficiency and sporting effectiveness."
The PFA Business School launches seven specific programmes to prepare players for football and sports industry jobs, focusing on topics such as Global Football Business Management, Psychology, Emotional Intelligence and Leadership, Football Data Analytics and Communication and Media. All the courses are designed for the busy schedules of current players and working professionals, utilising a mixture of online learning and face-to-face seminars.
Alejandro Cardenas, Director of the PFA Business School, said: "We recognise that our members, the players, have gained their skills and expertise through hands-on experience. Therefore, we have developed all of our programmes with a practical approach in mind, as we believe it is the most effective way to learn.
"Our faculty members have been carefully selected to reflect this methodology. They possess extensive knowledge and experience in the football industry, bringing a wealth of real-world insights to the table, including exposure to situations, conflicts, and challenges that cannot be found in textbooks.
"This hands-on experience is critical in preparing you for a successful career in football. We are confident that our approach will enhance the candidates' knowledge and skills, enabling them to thrive in a highly commercialised and competitive industry."
The PFA Business School represents a major step forward in supporting football players in career transition and personal development. It provides an excellent platform for them to develop new skills, explore new career options and increase their employability when their sporting career ends.
Find out more: businessschool.thepfa.com