New certificate ‘Management in Professional Football’ by DFL and DFB

04 March 2020 – In the interest of further developing German professional football, the DFL Deutsche Fußball Liga and the DFB today presented the joint training course ‘Management in Professional Football’ in Frankfurt. The course is intended to prepare those who are in future responsible for sports at clubs in the Bundesliga, Bundesliga 2 and 3. Liga for the tasks ahead of them as decision-makers in professional football.

DFL CEO Christian Seifert and Oliver Bierhoff, DFB Director National Teams and Academy, explained the idea behind the new course in the context of the ongoing process in which top-level football is becoming increasingly professional and specialised and the resulting highly complex requirements. As revealed in the recently published 2020 DFL Economic Report, the revenues of all clubs in the Bundesliga and Bundesliga 2 now add up to €4.8 billion. Further figures make clear the great responsibility of those conducting business on the sporting side: The player assets of the clubs in Germany’s top two divisions are worth a total of €1.25 billion. The cumulative cost of wages for players and coaching staff was around €1.67 billion, transfer expenditure was €932 million and transfer revenue €770 million.

Sharing of extensive knowledge

Although sporting directors and managers therefore frequently bear the most extensive budget responsibility within their organisation, no well-founded, skill-based training course tailor-made to prepare them for their tasks in this area has existed until now. Fredi Bobic, member of the management board at Eintracht Frankfurt, confirmed at the presentation of the certificate that the course will meet a definite need felt throughout the industry. Extensive knowledge will be shared which should contribute to clubs promoting their own resources to responsible roles. Potential participants are former footballers who are taking over key roles at their clubs as well as people who, through training and education, have purposefully worked their way into budding management positions, such as scouts, match analysts and squad planners. A nomination by the respective club is a key requirement for admission to the management course.

Tobias Haupt, head of the DFB Academy, and Ansgar Schwenken, DFL Director of Football Affairs & Fans, explained the structure of the course, which is divided into three main areas of competence: Bundesliga expertise, sporting expertise and management expertise. These are taught in various modules such as ‘Sports law and licensing’, ‘Scouting and squad planning’ and ‘Leadership in professional football’. Close collaboration between the DFL, DFB and DFB Academy made it possible to package this knowledge and prepare it in an application-oriented way. The large network of experts also provides the best possible link to applying what has been learnt in practice.

The programme will start in September 2020 and is limited to 19 days of presence per year. Until the new DFB Academy is completed, these will take place at external locations in association with the DFL. There will be a maximum of twelve participants in each cohort.