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About the course

If you are passionate about football, Solent University’s industry-leading football studies degree can provide you with the skills that you will need to thrive in a variety of roles across the football industry. Many of our graduates are now employed in a range of clubs and organisations at all levels of the game.

Solent University has been at the forefront of football education for nearly two decades and our Football Studies degree has emerged as the leading supplier of graduates to the football industry. Graduates have gone on to careers at Premier League clubs including Southampton, Chelsea, Arsenal, Manchester United, Manchester City and Tottenham Hotspur.

This degree provides students with comprehensive knowledge and real-world experience of the national and international football industry. Students have the opportunity to study a range of contemporary areas within the game, and tailor their study to their own specific interest within football.

Students will be able to benefit from the opportunity to tap into the University’s extensive network of contacts in the game. Regular lectures from guest speakers - including former Premier League and international players, managers, academy directors, leading club chairmen, media professionals, match officials and England national team staff - enable students to learn from and interact with professionals who have first-hand, high-level experience within the game.

Students on this course will also benefit from the University's partnership agreement with Southampton FC, with access to real-world industry experience at the Club as part of the curriculum, including professional coaching and development from Premier League coaching staff. Solent and Saints will also be collaborating on research projects to help influence the future of the game using applied learning gained by students through working with the Club.

If you apply for this course with a placement year, you have the opportunity to undertake a year in industry between your second and third years.
Placement year
This course offers additional qualifications for you to obtain with your degree.
Additional qualification
You have the opportunity to study abroad in one of our partner universities for a semester on this course.
Study abroad
If you're not quite ready for a full undergraduate degree, there's alternative entry through one of our foundation years.
Foundation year available
You have the opportunity to obtain a professional membership as part of this degree.
Professional memberships
As part of your studies you will have the opportunity to undertake a work experience placement.
Built in work experience placement
This course has access to Solent's specialist facilities.
Specialist facilities
After successfully completing your studies, there's an opportunity to continue your studies at Solent.
Further studies

Solent University is recommended as a ‘leader in football-related academic study’ by The Times Good University Guide.

What does this course lead to?

In recent years, students have secured work-based learning opportunities, internships and full-time employment with a number of clubs and associations, including:

  • The Football Association
  • The Premier League
  • Manchester United FC
  • Arsenal FC
  • Chelsea FC
  • Manchester City FC
  • Tottenham Hotspur FC
  • Birmingham City FC
  • Watford FC
  • Newcastle United FC
  • West Ham United FC
  • Charlton Athletic FC
  • Millwall FC
  • Crystal Palace FC
  • Portsmouth FC
  • Reading FC
  • Southampton FC
  • Major League Soccer (USA).

View our infographic

Who is this course for?

The football studies degree is open to students from a wide range of academic backgrounds. Graduates from the Solent sport foundation year will receive direct entry.

We expect all our applicants to be passionate about football, and to aspire towards a career within the game.

Facts and figures

Fees icon

Fees and costs

Tuition fees

The tuition fees for the 2021/22 academic year are:
UK, EU and Channel Island full-time fees: £9,250 per year
International full-time fees: £13,800 per year
UK, EU and Channel Island placement year fee: £1,425
International placement year fee: £1,850

Following the UK government's confirmation that EU students will no longer be eligible for home fee status benefits, we've made the decision to keep EU tuition fees the same as UK tuition fees for 2021 entry.

For further information, please visit our tuition fees page.

Other costs

While most course costs are covered by your tuition fees, some essential resources and optional extras may need to be paid for separately. These additional costs are listed below. For advice on budgeting and managing your money, please contact

The 2021/22 other costs are not yet available. 

Bursaries and scholarships

Solent University offers a range of bursaries and scholarships that provide financial assistance or waive fees for tuition or accommodation. Each bursary or scholarship has specific eligibility criteria. Check out our bursaries and scholarships pages to find out more.

Graduation costs

For graduates in 2020, there is no charge to attend graduation, but you will be required to pay for the rental of your academic gown (approximately £45 per graduate, depending on your award). You may also wish to purchase official photography packages, which range in price from £15 to £200+. Graduation is not compulsory, so if you prefer to have your award sent to you, there is no cost. Extra guest tickets will go on sale after results publication and will be sold on a first-come-first-served basis. The cost per ticket was £15 in 2019, but this fee is subject to change for future years. Please note, we do not guarantee there will be any extra tickets available to purchase.
Key entry requirements icon

Key entry requirements

96 - 112 UCAS tariff points from A-levels or equivalent

  • A minimum of two completed A-levels, a BTEC Extended Diploma at MMM or BTEC Diploma at DM or equivalent qualification, or a combination of qualifications which comply with the minimum entry requirement of 96 UCAS points.
  • Alternative entry to this course is available through the Sport Foundation Year.
  • If you are applying from outside the UK, find information about entry requirements, visas and agents for your country here.
  • For further information about UK, EU and international qualifications, please refer to our course entry requirement statement.

English language requirements

Applicants who do not have English as their first language will be required to demonstrate an approved level of proficiency in the use of the English language. The agreed minimum requirements for this course are:

  • IELTS minimum 6.0 overall with a minimum of 5.5 in each individual component
  • TOEFL IBT minimum 80 with a minimum of 20 in each individual component
  • Duolingo English Language Test - 100 overall with minimum of 90 in each component
  • or equivalent.

Qualifications are checked before enrolment, and international students must bring their original certificates or certified copies when coming to study at the University.

Pre-Sessional English programme

The University also offers a pre-sessional English programme for international students who wish to improve their level of English before starting a degree course.

Got a question about this course?

Contact our Solent team:

If you are a UK, EU or EEA applicant please contact 023 8201 5066 If you are an international applicant please contact 023 8201 5066

How to apply

Any student applying for the first year of a full-time/sandwich undergraduate course must apply through UCAS (University and Colleges Admissions Service). This includes mature, overseas and EU students.

Nearly all schools and colleges offer their students the facility of applying electronically through the UCAS website using 'Apply'; it may also be used by those applying independently in the UK and overseas. This facility and all course information can be found on the UCAS website:

Your application should reach UCAS by 15 January if you hope to enter a course the following autumn. Early application is advised for the most popular subject areas. Late applications may be made until the end of June. The UCAS Code for the University is S30, code name SOLNT.

Please click the links below to apply through UCAS:

Mode of study
Full-time 3 years Apply
Placement Year 4 years Apply

Sport Foundation Year route:

Mode of study
Full-time 4 years Apply
Placement Year 5 years Apply
How to apply

What you'll study

The Solent football degree is divided into five main strands to give the students the most comprehensive knowledge and understanding of the football industry.

During your time with us, you will study modules covering these five key areas:

  • coaching and management
  • football development
  • psychology and performance
  • research
  • sociology and politics


Web-based learning

Solent's virtual learning environment provides quick online access to assignments, lecture notes, suggested reading and other course information.

The Student Hub

The Student Hub is a central space where you can access all of the information and support you need during your time at University.

Professional and experienced staff can help resolve any query, and if they cannot answer the question themselves they will find the person who can.

Career support

Meet the course team

David Webber academic profile David Webber Course Leader View profile
Mark Turner academic profile Mark Turner Senior Lecturer View profile
Louis Langdown academic profile Louis Langdown Senior Lecturer View profile
Chris Neville academic profile Chris Neville Senior Lecturer View profile
Dr Emma Mosley academic profile Emma Mosley Lecturer View profile
Colin Barnes academic profile Colin Barnes Lecturer View profile
Russell Discombe academic profile Russell Discombe Lecturer View profile
Graham Mills academic profile Graham Mills Lecturer View profile
Rhea Preston academic profile Rhea Preston Lecturer View profile
Kim Wilcox academic profile Kim Wilcox Lecturer View profile
Rory Magrath academic profile Rory Magrath Associate Professor View profile

The university cannot guarantee any particular members of staff will teach specific aspects of the course in the future, but will endeavour to ensure the teaching team maintains their balance of experience and qualifications.


Practical sessions are delivered at Solent’s multi-million-pound Test Park football centre, which boasts a full-size all-weather 3G pitch, an FA Step 5 football arena and state-of-the-art built-in teaching space.

Students also have access to AnalysisPro/Nacsport video and performance analysis equipment and software.

We provide a stimulating learning environment and access to state-of-the-art resources to help you make the most of your time with us. Flexible spaces, Wi-Fi facilities and learning zones all contribute to our lively and contemporary study environment at Solent.

Solent's long-established links with the football industry give our students fascinating and contemporary insights into the modern game, and provide them with the knowledge needed to carve out their own careers within football.

Your future

You will be well placed for a wide range of roles in football, whether you are interested in development, coaching, scouting, performance analysis or research and education.

Suitable roles for Football graduates include:

  • Football development officer 
  • Academy/youth/reserve/first team coach
  • Club scout
  • Performance analyst
  • Research/policy/education and welfare roles

Industry links

The academic staff on the Football Studies degree possess a wealth of knowledge and experience at all levels of the game. Many are research-active, publishing their work in a variety of different journals. Some have coached at Premier League and Football League clubs, while others have conducted major research reviews that have changed Premier League and Football League rules and regulations. Our staff frequently appear on national and international media channels to provide expert comment and analysis on football-related issues.

The course benefits from extensive industry links which include a longstanding relationship with Southampton FC. The University has provided administrative education for FIFA, the Football Association, the Premier League, the Football League, the Football Conference and more than 60 professional clubs.


Gaining practical work experience is at the heart of the course and students are required to take part in a football leadership programme, working on projects in the local football community.

Students will be required to undertake a minimum of 4 weeks full time equivalent work placement as a core element of the course and the University has good links with clubs and organisations at all levels of the game. Students will be expected to arrange their own placement but will receive support in doing so. The University can also help students to use their coaching skills in the United States and elsewhere during holiday periods.

Graduate stories

Robert's story

Robert Mathews - Head coach at Chelsea FC Foundation International

What made you choose to study at Solent?
I chose to study at Solent because of its great reputation for the Football Studies course. I also attended an open day and spoke to current students on the course. The overall impression of Solent and the city itself made my choice incredibly easy in the end. 

What was the best part about your course?
The best part of the course was the support, guidance and expertise from the tutors, particularly the coaching staff as coaching was the avenue I wanted to pursue.

What do you do and what does it involve?
I currently work for the International Department at the Chelsea FC Foundation. I'm placed in Bangkok, Thailand for 10 out of 12 months in the year delivering a genuine Chelsea FC Soccer School programme in partnership with multiple international schools in the city. As head coach my role is to deliver coaching sessions to multiple participants in different programmes and help develop the business by ensuring CFC standards are met. 

What is your biggest achievement in your work so far? 
My biggest achievement is being offered the opportunity to travel on the Chelsea FC first team tour in Singapore. This involved travelling with the Chelsea FC senior first team, delivering sessions to the surrounding community and supporting the fanzones on match-days.

What advice would you give to someone just starting this course?
Seek opportunities! The degree alone is not enough to secure employment, and the tutors always encouraged me to seek other opportunities to develop myself outside of the degree. For example, coaching courses and part-time coaching/football development roles. 

Get ready to find your place

You can still experience life at Solent at a virtual open day! Hear from course tutors, take virtual campus and accommodation tours, and chat to us live.

Register for a virtual open day