Degree overview

Football is a multi-billion-pound global industry. With its revenue driven by the marketing of its products and services, competition amongst brands is fierce and qualified professionals are in high demand.

On this degree you will gain an understanding of football business and be introduced to concepts such as business models, management, business planning and return on investment by our expert academics.

This course is available with a Foundation year for those who do not meet main entry requirements. Please see ‘Modules’ and ‘Entry Requirements’ sections on this page for further information, including UCAS codes.

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Degree content

Your studies will focus on the core functions of football business management accompanied by marketing modules.

The marketing pathways explore the principles of marketing and communications and apply theory to live projects to develop your employability skills.

You will gain an understanding of football business and be introduced to international business models and management concepts, business planning, return on investment, strategy integration, contemporary issues and digital marketing.

You will plan, implement and evaluate digital marketing plans for an industry organisation.

You will be taught in lectures and participate in seminar debates, with academic support via UCFB’s virtual learning environment.

Assessments combine practical web development with the academic rigour of market research, consumer segmentation and audience selection.

The many facets of marketing provide a broad context for learning and there are exciting job prospects for those who can thrive in its multicultural, technologically sophisticated world.

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Degree Specification Documents and Information

Graduates of the BA (Hons) Football Business & Marketing degree will be awarded degrees by our esteemed academic partner institution, Bucks New University. 

Benchmark statements

UCFB degrees fall under three subject benchmark statements – Business and Management (2015); Events, Hospitality, Leisure, Sport & Tourism (2016); and Psychology (2016). Visit the QAA website to access each of these benchmark statements.

Download programme specification

Please click here to download the BA (Hons) Football Business & Marketing programme specification documentation.

Amy O'Connor, Watford

I was able to achieve things beyond my imagination whilst at UCFB because I was learning about something I cared about and had lecturers around me who had both knowledge and experience in the industry.

Amy O’ConnorUCFB graduate and Business Development Executive at Watford FC



Foundation year modules are only applicable to students enrolled onto this degree course with an integrated foundation year at the beginning.

Preparing for Success in Higher Education

This module enables students to develop self-awareness and to identify those personal qualities, attributes and skills required for successful progression to Level 4 academic study.

The module provides students with the opportunity to reflect on their existing abilities, and to further develop key academic and study skills.

Employability and Enterprise

This module allows students to learn about employment prospects in their chosen area of interest. This includes research about what employers are looking for in future recruits – including technical skills, transferable skills, personal attributes and business awareness – as an important pre-cursor for being able to present themselves effectively to employers using a CV, application form, social media networking and during a job interview.

Students will also develop entrepreneurial skills, being able to formulate a properly evidenced proposal to address the needs of identified consumers, for example, some innovation, service improvement or new business opportunity. They will be able to pitch their idea in a professional manner and using a range of appropriate visual aids.


This module provides students with the opportunity to analyse a problem that relates to their specialist subject area, making use of information gathered from various sources using different methods and strategies.

Once the problem is fully understood, as well as the requirements and expectations of the stakeholders, a project can then be planned and completed in a structured manner in order to implement some intervention to bring improvements and benefits to the inspected situation.

Throughout, students will be required to effectively communicate and report their progress with their project, and make use of the advice and guidance provided by an appropriate project supervisor.

Managing Football Operations and People

The last two decades has seen football grow at an unprecedented rate, in large thanks to an ever increasing multi-billion-pound TV audience. Because of this the role of a football club and the variety of jobs they provide means that club operations are now wide and varied.

This module will provide students with an understanding of a range of concepts and models related to understanding and managing people, work and behaviour in national and international football related organisations, including the influence of marketing, sources of finance for different commercial purposes and political landscape of the game.

First Year

Semester 1

Understanding Football Business

The football business is a constantly growing global industry because of its increased popularity and revenues. The unique role that clubs play in society creates an environment that distinguishes the football business from other industries. Administrators of the game need to respect and retain both its spirit and the impact of contemporary issues on its global operations.

You will learn how different factors have influenced the development of the football business. Applying basic business theories, you will begin to understand the framework within which all football-related institutions coexist and the decision-making process of clubs, players, agents, governing bodies and other stakeholders.

The impact of the external environment, the supporters, ownership models of clubs and social context which has shaped the game will also be considered.

An Introduction to Marketing

Marketing has become synonymous with the ways in which firms attract customers and persuade them to purchase goods and services. Marketing is also a business philosophy that places the customer at the heart of all its activities (customer centric) and regards satisfying customer needs and wants as the only way to build sustainable competitive advantage.

You will explore the application of marketing concepts and ideas to the modern football industry and how it has contributed to its growth both in grassroots and professional contexts.

Semester 2

Understanding Football Fans & Customers

This module examines our understanding of the football and sports consumer, their motivations, the difference between a ‘fan’ and a ‘customer’, and their level of involvement in purchasing decisions.

You will examine the unique relationship between the fan and the team and consider the growing number of supporter led organisations and their influence on the national game. In collaboration with other students, you will carry out market research using both primary and secondary research techniques to look at the characteristics of a football fan and their decision-making process, conducting research for the benefit of the sport and its interested parties.

Integrated Marketing Communications

Integrated marketing communications is the art of using all aspects of the communications methods available to a marketer in a cohesive way.

To do this you will study specialist areas, relating to above and below the line communications methods, and internet-based through the line communications including; advertising and the appropriate media channels, public relations, sponsorship and sales promotion, and the use of social media.

You will also learn how to enhance and manage the relationships that exist between external clients and advertising/PR agencies.

Second Year

Semester 1

International Football Business Analysis

This module examines football organisations from a functional perspective, considering the roles, operations and challenges impacting on the international business environment.

The purpose of the module is to help you to become more familiar with key business functions and indicators of the different football associations and leagues around the world and their connection with their respective business environments.

Event Marketing

Event marketing is dynamic, exciting, diverse in scope and characterised by the involvement of organisations within private, public and third sectors.

Events in sport, hospitality and entertainment industries take place in a variety of arenas and contexts (i.e. different sports/activities such as football, rugby, ultimate fighting championship, event launches, after dinner speaking, exhibitions, charitable and awards ceremonies).

This module is designed to develop your understanding of event marketing, including the multiple logistical elements, segmentation, positioning and potential problems which need to be considered and in doing so you will acquire both business management and organisational skills, which will be demonstrated through critical path analysis.

Semester 2

Research Methods

The aim of this module is to provide the student with an understanding of research principles, a range of quantitative and qualitative research methodologies and appropriate analysis for these. This will enable the student to develop the research skills and knowledge necessary to undertake an independent research project. Students will be provided with support in developing their writing style to incorporate citations and make use of referencing.

They will be introduced to Academic Journals and will use these to inform their understanding of the research approaches used in the sector. This will also serve to familiarise the learners with the role of Journals in their wider study. The final aspect of this module will introduce hypothesis testing, with learners making use of a computer package to undertake simple statistical tests commonly used within their subject area.

Digital Marketing

Digital technology plays a significant part in developing marketing plans. It is important for a marketer to determine which technological application is the most important in any given marketing campaign.

This module will provide you with a perspective of the marketing information systems infrastructure. You will be expected to develop an understanding in how evolving technologies can support the marketing of products and services.

Third Year

Semester 1

Football Brand Strategy

In this module, you will evaluate how branding concepts are conveyed to markets. You will be encouraged to debate the applicability of these arguments to football clubs and how they can be implemented to fulfil sporting goals.

You will develop branding strategies for sporting organisations which will contribute to and align with the wider marketing strategy of such organisations

Strategic Management

Studying this module will develop your knowledge of strategic management in different organisational and environmental contexts.

You will learn how strategic management is applied within football (grassroots/professional) and sporting industries. You will also be able to critically evaluate how strategic information systems support strategic planning and thinking.

The module will provide you with theoretical concepts and relevant tools for undertaking strategic analyses, considering strategic choices and making strategic recommendations.

Semester 2

Research Project

This module aims to provide students with the opportunity for independent learning through the completion of an individual, extended research project. The project requires a high level of individual application and commitment to research and enquiry. It provides students with the opportunity to identify, reflect upon and explore a topic that has implications for their own professional development.

Global Marketing Management

The aim of this module is to develop your understanding of global complexities such as the impact of cultural and dynamic markets. The module will enable you to apply global marketing theories and concepts to the business of sport and in particular, the business of football.

The international business environment is examined in the context of foreign markets and customers. Due diligence will be considered prior to entry of new markets through research and evaluation of entry strategies. You will consider how to develop a global marketing campaign.

Entry requirements

Applications are welcomed from students with a genuine passion and ambition to work in the football and sports industries.

With Foundation Year
UCAS codes
  • UCFB Wembley course code: FMAF
  • Institution: U10
  • Campus: W
  • UCFB Etihad Campus course code: FMAF
  • Institution: U10
  • Campus: E

The minimum academic requirement for the degree course with Integrated Foundation Year is a 64 UCAS point score under the new UCAS tariff system for 2019 entry.

Other minimum requirements

Applicants will normally have achieved one of the following:

  • A Levels with DDE or higher
  • A BTEC Extended diploma grade MPP
  • A BTEC Diploma grade MM
  • A combination of BTEC and A-Level qualifications

Applicants are also expected to hold a GCSE grade C in Maths or English.

To be considered eligible for the programme, applicants must have completed at least two years of post-secondary education or work experience.

Applicants applying without the minimum required UCAS points can still be considered on a case by case basis and may be requested to attend an interview and assessment prior to receiving an offer.

International applicants will be asked to achieve IELTS for UKVI at grade 6.0 overall or above.

Enquiries are encouraged from anybody who does not meet the above criteria but would like to be considered for the programme. Please email for further advice.

Three Year Degree
UCAS codes
  • UCFB Wembley course code: FMA1
  • Institution: U10
  • Campus: W
  • UCFB Etihad Campus course code: FMA1
  • Institution:U10
  • Campus: E

The minimum academic requirement for this degree course is a 96 UCAS point score under the UCAS tariff system for 2019 entry.

Other minimum requirements

Applicants will normally have achieved one of the following:

  • A minimum of 2 A Levels including two C grades
  • A BTEC Extended diploma grade MMM
  • A BTEC Diploma grade DD
  • A combination of BTEC and A-Level qualifications with at least two C graded A levels or Merit graded BTEC equivalents.
  • International Baccalaureate (minimum of 28 points)
  • An Advanced GNVQ in an appropriate subject at Distinction level
  • An Access Course: minimum of 60 credits, including at least 45 at Level 3
  • An equivalent level 3 qualification

Applicants should have a strong GCSE profile, including English at Grade 4 or Grade C, or equivalent and Maths at Grade 4 or Grade C (specifically for Football Business & Finance, Sports Business & Sports Law and Sport Psychology).

Other equivalent qualifications, including those from your own country, will be considered for entry.

Applicants for whom English is a second language will need a valid Academic IELTS certificate with an overall score of 6.0 with no lower than 5.5 in each component for entry on to a degree programme (Level 4).

All qualifications are subject to approval by the UCFB Admissions team, based on UKVI requirements.

We also welcome applications from mature students who may not possess the above qualifications but may have relevant experience.

All applicants will be expected to demonstrate a specific interest in their preferred area of study and should have a commitment to engaging with the subject through the academic programme and our complementary curriculum involving high profile guest speakers, master classes and short course opportunities.

Entry with advanced standing

Students are normally expected to start at Level 4, but can be admitted to any level of the course which is considered suitable, after portfolio review and interview, using the Credit Accumulation and Transfer Scheme (CATS).

Under this arrangement, a student may apply to have previous academic credits or other learning or experience taken into consideration. Such applications are considered by the Faculty CATS committee and must be supported by the Academic Department.

Career prospects

Football is a multi-billion-pound global industry driven by the marketing of its products and events. The emergence of digital platforms has provided football organisations with the tools to reach a range of stakeholders on a local and global scale, with it coming a huge variety of professional roles within the game including marketing manager, football analyst, club welfare officer, commercial executive, CRM manager, partnerships executive and programme administrator.

The UCFB Employability & Enrichment programme

Over 90% of UCFB graduates are in employment within six months of graduating and almost two-thirds of them work within the global sports industry.

At UCFB we bridge the gap between education and business, allowing a unique approach to education. We provide two curricula; the academic curriculum which encompasses exams and coursework and the Employability & Enrichment programme – a three year journey of professional and personal development.

This provides access to best-in-class industry guest speakers, additional qualifications and exceptional opportunities to apply for work experience placements to ensure our students graduate as well-rounded, empowered professionals.

Find out more about your career journey at UCFB

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Employer Endorsement

All of us at the Rugby Football League have enjoyed working with UCFB and their students and we’re very pleased to be an official partner. Previous students we’ve welcomed to the Rugby Football League have been a huge help to the organisation and we look forward to welcoming more individuals in the future.

Kait LudwigClub Marketing & Business Operations Manager at the Rugby Football League
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UK/EU students

UK/EU tuition fees 2019

£9,250 per year
Apply now
International students

International tuition fees 2019

£14,250 per year
Apply now
Additional information about fees and costs

Visit our dedicated page about fees and student finance.

Additional costs

The provision of a facility or service including accommodation may be subject to an additional charge (i.e. separate from tuition fees). Where this is the case, we will make this clear in advance and payment for such service shall be made in accordance with any additional contract made between you and the University.

In some instances, optional Employability & Enrichment activities provided by UCFB may carry an additional cost for participants (e.g. qualifications with external certification such as FA Coaching Badges). Any additional costs will be provided to students in advance of any such sessions running.

UCFB Award in Football and Sports Leadership

At UCFB we are dedicated to maximising the career opportunities of all of our students. This is why we offer unparalleled opportunities beyond the learning environment, enhanced by exclusive partnerships with some of the biggest and most influential names and organisations in world sport.

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