With the football industry growing at an unprecedented rate, on and off the pitch, more and more roles are being created at clubs and organisations. Therefore, increasing numbers of management roles are being made available.

Actual training for management positions are rare, with many companies choosing to instead focus on training and development of specific ‘technical’ areas of a job. This has led to a number of ‘accidental managers’ across many sectors of the UK workforce, leaving a sizeable gap in leadership and management skills across the country, resulting in an obvious productivity gap between the UK and other developed nations. Therefore, it is clear that there is an urgent requirement for effective leadership and management training, and the football industry isn’t exempt from this.

This programme will cover essential elements of leadership and management within a football and sporting environment, including decision making, meeting stakeholder needs, leadership practice, operational risk management, organisational financial management, managing change and developing marketing plans.

Underpinning theory will be covered, however apprentices will be provided with the opportunity to apply this to their own workplace. This will take the form of two business projects within the study period to ensure theoretical study can be applied back to the apprentice’s own place of work, providing an opportunity for learning to become embedded and a swift and direct return on employers’ training investment.

Apprentices will receive a Diploma in Higher Education and Chartered Manager Status once successfully completing the programme.


The content below is an example with full and final details to be outlined on sign up.


Year one
• Managing and leading people in a sport environment
• The business of sport
• Negotiated business project 1

Year two
• Finance and Accounting in a football and sport context
• Sales and marketing
• Negotiated business project 2

Year three
• Project management
• Sport leadership practice

Each year includes portfolio reviews, personal tutoring and employer reviews.

Delivery and duration+

UCFB can deliver this programme to apprentices at either of our state-of-the-art campuses in and around Wembley Stadium London and the Etihad Stadium, Manchester. Other regional delivery locations will be considered, depending on demand.

The most appropriate mode of delivery will be determined in close collaboration with apprentice employers and options to be considered including day-release or study blocks built around periods where employers find it easier to release apprentices for ‘off the job training’. All apprenticeship training will include some element of virtual learning, which reduces the need for direct teaching and excessive travel. We recommend learning time to be 2.5 years. However, this can be adapted to meet employer requirements.


This course uses £9,000 of Apprenticeship Levy funds.


Download the Operations / Departmental Manager Apprenticeship (Level 5) brochure by clicking here.

*The above content is subject to validation