As part of the programme, Kick It Out works with the UEFA Foundation, the Premier League and UCFB to provide bespoke training sessions to the 12 Game Changers.

The sessions centre around the core learning themes of empowerment, leadership, football governance and project planning alongside enhancing their knowledge of equality and inclusion.

Seminar 1 - July 2018

The first session was supported by a series of Premier League staff and guest speakers providing careers and leadership advice. Below you can read testimonials from Game Changers and find more about the event here.

“The first Game Changers seminar really set the tone for what’s to come over the next eleven months. We were so privileged to receive a huge amount of wisdom from industry experts who gave up their time to inspire and support us.

“Not only did we learn a lot about education, leadership and management, but I had some incredible conversations with senior managers at the Premier League who gave me important advice that’s supported me with my next steps championing inclusion, diversity and equality within the football industry."

Ceylon Hickman, Game Changer 

“I certainly enjoyed my time – the opportunity to learn from great leaders such as Sir Paul Grant and many alike was just phenomenal. I look forward to similar settings where we can come together, learn and come up with strategies to drive change in our society.”

Francis Osinloye, Game Changer

Seminar 2 - August 2018

The second session was supported by a series of UCFB staff and guest speakers providing careers and leadership advice - you can can hear more from them by listening to the Kick It Outcast, recorded live on the day.

Seminar 3 - September 2018

The third session was led by two UCFB lecturers specialising in football governance – Dr Josh McLeod and Gustavo Spanholi.

Mcleod and Spanholi took the Game Changers of a journey of the ins and outs of governance in the football industry at home and abroad, including topics such as:

  • Key definitions around governance and explanations of the roles at football clubs, including the board of directors and committees.
  • The governance of football in this country, including recent controversies surrounding The FA – leading MPs to label football as the worst run sport in the country.
  • Rangers FC as a case study, where a massive club in Scotland that was put in administration and relegated several divisions as result of poor governance.
  • How boards can be made more effective.
  • Analysing the objectives of football clubs and the balance between profit for shareholders and success on the pitch. 

Seminar 4 - November 2018

Seminar Four of the Game Changers programme was again hosted by UCFB at Wembley Stadium, focusing on football governance and intermediaries.

The first workshop was delivered by Josh McLeod, lecturer in International Football Business, and focused on football governance following on from an introduction to the topic in seminar 3. The Game Changers had the chance to learn about fan representation on boards and how this can both benefit a football club, but at the same time open up potential conflicts of interest. The workshop also provided an insight into the roles and responsibilities of sporting directors and directors of football, including how their position fits within a club’s infrastructure.

The second workshop of the day was delivered by Nana Mensah, who is also a lecturer in International Football Business, and looked at the role of a football intermediary, with an emphasis on the African market. Nana discussed how he entered the industry, as well as explaining the skills required to succeed in becoming a football agent and the pros and cons involved with this line of work. Nana also reflected on the mechanics of how business is conducted in the African market, how player development is handled within different countries and corruption within African football.

“I enjoyed both seminars and found it extremely interesting and thought provoking to learn about these two different aspects within the footballing industry. So far, the Game Changers programme has been an invaluable experience in gaining industry knowledge from some of the leading professionals within football.”

James Coulbeck, Game Changer