After graduating with First-Class Honours from UCFB’s BA (Hons) Football Business & Finance programme, Sunny Dhillon landed a role as Partnerships Analyst at Wolverhampton Wanderers. Working at the heart of the Premier League club, he’s helped develop innovative projects from an eSports team to Wolves’ very own fashion brand. Here, Sunny tells us about the role and how UCFB set him up for a career in the football and sports industry…

Tell us about your role as Partnerships Analyst at Wolves and what it involves?

Having a presence in the Premier League, the most watched league in the world, means Wolves can reach global audiences and tell unique stories to fans across the world. For my role it’s about attracting new partners to the Wolves story by analysing new markets and industries the club can challenge in and create a compelling story with a partner. Wolves have done a great job in diversifying their own story in different parts of the world whereby we’re not only a football club but also an eSports club and fashion brand, which has allowed us to become one of the fastest growing clubs in European football. We consider ourselves to be a challenger club that can really push the boundaries in what a partnership can offer to brands.   

Wolves had a great season last year in both the Premier League and Europa League. What were some of the highlights for you at the club? 

There were some great memories and strides forward made by the club both on and off the field. Seeing the team compete in the quarter final of the Europa League was a high point that played great testament to the growth the club has had in recent times. But also some of the results in the Premier League, going back to doing the double over Manchester City and beating Spurs at their new stadium. 

How has your BA (Hons) Football & Finance degree helped you in the role? 

Having a career in football is something that came to life at UCFB. Before studying there I wasn’t aware of the career paths and options available, so in that sense it gave me the awareness. It also helped me develop key skill sets and learn more about the areas in football I wanted to go into, especially being able to dedicate assignments and curricular tasks to those areas. The most important, however, is the experience I was able to develop during my time at UCFB – notably working for The FA at St. George’s Park as a team liaison at the under-19 UEFA European Championship Qualifiers and Soccer Aid 2018, with the latter being my first dive into sponsorships within football.

What are your hopes for Wolves in future years?

It’s been a tough season for many clubs on the field and Wolves too have experienced that with injuries to key players. But in terms of our plans away from that it’s how we can continue to build on what we have as a brand and engage with new fans as well as new partners. The addition of eSports into the club’s profile will increase its appeal to a wider audience given the growth the sector is seeing. On the field, continuing to challenge in the Premier League will only cement the strong foundation that’s been built.

Do you think Coronavirus will have a long-term impact on the Premier League?

Hopefully not. I think we all hope that the light at the end of the tunnel isn’t too far away and we’re able to enjoy football again as we once knew it. Seeing empty stadiums has been a shock to everyone and it’s been disappointing that some great moments in football and wider sport haven’t been in the company of fans.   

What advice can you offer any prospective students looking to study at UCFB?

Engage with all the support structures UCFB have in place and not just your lectures. They have a broad team who supported me in getting CV and interview advice and helped me to find work experience opportunities. Those key skills and experiences are what every employer will look for and showing them you have an appetite will only benefit you.