At first glance the idea of a football MBA looks rather like a marketing wheeze to jazz up a business course with a bit of sporting glamour. But the business of sport, particularly football, is so different from the mainstream corporate world that people working in it need a specific set of skills and knowledge. It requires its own programme, said Geoff Pearson, director of studies at the Football Industries MBA offered by Liverpool University.
“There are three main differences between running a football club and other businesses,” he said. “First, there is the financial risk. If you are a championship club, for example, financial planning for the year ahead is difficult. You could be promoted and suddenly have £60m extra land in your lap, or you could get relegated and lose millions.
“So we teach people different ways of doing medium-term planning.” Often that means urging executives to be more conservative in their predictions, Pearson said.
Read more in The Sunday Times