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Friday 31 January 2014

Centre staff deliver football education programme in Brazil

Pitch perfect business skills

Keen to sharpen business as well as ball skills, the Sydenhams Football League (Wessex) is going into partnership with Solent to provide professional training for club administrators. As part of the collaboration, the first of its kind in the country, the University is developing an online learning course that will be funded by a development grant from the Football Association. The course will be adapted from the programme created and run by the University and LMCFR for the professional game and administered via the League Managers Association. Members of the League will work with experts from the University’s football studies and learning technologies departments to adapt, design and develop the new online course. “Our academic provision, facilities and research and consultancy work are all making a recognised impact in the football industry. This, coupled with our expert knowledge of learning technologies, makes us the perfect partner,” said Phil Green, director of sport at Solent. Bob Purkiss, development officer for the League said: “This course will enable more people to get involved with the game and gain a qualification that is transferable.”

Centre staff deliver football education programme in Brazil

Centre director, Dr Richard Elliott, football studies course leader, Clwyd Jones, and associate lecturer, Mario Maranica, were invited to Sao Paulo, Brazil last week to deliver an education programme for representatives from a range of roles at Brazilian clubs and associations. The three day programme included two days of pitch-based activities delivered by UEFA A licence coach, Clwyd and UEFA Pro licence coach, Mario. Day three was spent exploring issues relating to the business of football and player development with Richard.

Solent staff were invited to run the course by Unisport, a Brazilian based sports marketing company that has big ambitions to develop football education in the country. Pedro Stern, Director of Unisport commented: “We selected Solent University because it’s known in Europe for its academic research in football.”

It is hoped that the course, which garnered national media attention in Brazil, will be the first of many. Richard Elliott commented: “Football is part of the very fabric of Brazilian culture and the national team have been enormously successful in the past. However, Brazilian domestic football lags some way behind the much more developed European leagues on a number of measures. Our hope is that by providing new ways of thinking, both on and off the pitch, the attendees of this programme can work to develop Brazilian football for the future.”

Dual role for graduate at Saints FC

Football studies graduate Mike Dixon has taken on a dual role at Southampton Football Club. Mike, who graduated in 2012, will work for the Saints Foundation as a funded project officer where he will have responsibility for a project that aims to provide learning opportunities for 16-24 year olds that are not in education, training or employment. Mike will also coach in the club's elite development centre. Discussing the importance of his degree in preparing him for both roles, Mike said: "The degree I did at Southampton Solent University really helped me to get to where I am today. It gave me a much greater understanding of the industry. The practical knowledge that I gained on the course, tied with my work experience, gave me an understanding of how football clubs work. I look forward to going further with my career within football. The knowledge and vital skills I gained at Solent will be pivotal in any steps I make forward in the future."