Academy overview

With partnerships with The Football Association, The National League, League Managers Association, Kick It Out and over 350 employment partners from the world of sport, our undergraduate academy is a natural next step in our vision to drive forward the sports industry together.

Our academy provides unparalleled opportunities for aspiring professionals to study university degrees in football business, coaching and/or related industries alongside their football training programme, giving them the best chance at a successful career in the beautiful game, whether on or off the pitch.

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At UCFB’s Manchester Undergraduate Academy, elite level male players are able to train full-time with the schedule and attention to detail of a professional footballer, led by highly experienced coaches from the English Premier League and Academy system.

In 2018 we developed The Undergraduate Academy. The aim of the academy is to allow players who have been released from professional club academies the opportunity to continue to develop their footballing talents through a full time coaching and education programme. Last year the programme had one main partnership with Football Club United Manchester (FC United) who play in the National League North. Players on the programme became part of the FC United under 21’s development squad and competed in the Northwest Under 21’s Development Premier Division as FC United. Alongside striving to be part of FC United’s’ first team in the National League North. Furthermore, 6 players made their first team debut during the 2018/19 season. With a further 5 players playing for other North west clubs at National League North or Evo Stick level.

The programme for 2019 has taken a different focus through placing players at the appropriate level and club for the stage of their development with more partnerships being formed with a number of Semi-Professional clubs in the North West area ranging from the National League to North West Counties such as; Stockport County FC, Curzon Ashton FC, FC United of Manchester, Cheadle Town FC, 1874 Northwich FC and Stockport Town FC.

Players will train at UCFB during the week and also play in the British University and Colleges League (BUCS) Wednesday League, before joining the appropriate team for training and fixtures on the weekend. Furthermore, the programme will be enhanced with fixtures arranged against professional and semi-professional teams in order to challenge and develop the players further.

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Eligible degrees

Please see below to visit each degree page and find out more.

Eligible degrees
BA (Hons) Football Business & Finance

Football is one of the fastest growing businesses in the world today, with player transfers, contracts, sponsorship and merchandise worth hundreds of millions of pounds.

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BA (Hons) Football Business & Marketing

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.

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BA (Hons) Football Business & Media

Vastly expanding media revenue, like ever-increasing TV Rights deals, means that clubs that finish bottom of the Premier League earn more prize money than the winners of the Champions League. How is this value determined?

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BA (Hons) Football Coaching & Management

The role of coach or manager in football is one full of immense pressure, but with that comes potentially huge rewards.

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BA (Hons) Football Coaching & Talent Development

Identifying and developing talent is an imperative facet of the modern game, with more and more clubs vying for the stars of tomorrow as transfer fees continue to break records.

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BA (Hons) International Football Business

The globalisation of football has been swift. Growing markets in the likes of Asia and the Americas mean an understanding of the sport in an international context opens many career paths in football business.

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BA (Hons) Multimedia Sports Journalism

The media landscape has changed almost beyond recognition in recent years following the digital revolution, which has paved the way for a 24-hour rolling news agenda. In that time, sports journalism has also developed to become the fastest growing sector in UK media.

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BA (Hons) Physical Education

There is a persistent demand for qualified teachers in popular disciplines such as Physical Education. As a subject area in the National Curriculum, Physical Education places diverse demands upon learners and teachers alike.

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BA (Hons) Sports Business & Coaching

The workforce within football and sports businesses, clubs and organisations is changing and the line drawn between coaching, management and business within the same organisation has blurred. No longer can individuals exist in isolation and ignore other parts of the business operations.

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Entry requirements

Application eligibility

Alongside footballing talents, applicants must meet the minimum academic and/or professional requirements to be accepted to study at UCFB.

Students on the Undergraduate Academy Manchester have the option of choosing an undergraduate degree, many of which also offer a foundation year for those who do not meet the requirements for the 3-year programme. For a full list of undergraduate degrees, please click here. Alternatively, academy players can complete a one-year Certificate of Higher Education in Football Coaching & Management at UCFB, which consists of the first year modules from the BA (Hons) Football Coaching & Management degree. The Certificate of Higher Education requires 78 UCAS points.

Applicants for whom English is a second language will need a valid IELTS certificate with an overall score of 6.0 and no individual score lower than 5.5.

Applicants to UCFB Etihad Campus must hold a British/EU passport or have the right to work and study in the UK.

Career prospects

Career prospects for UCFB graduates from the Undergraduate Academy are wide and varied depending on the individuals chosen degree programme and playing progression within the academy. Should they not go onto achieve professional footballer status, graduates may wish to also consider more traditional business, sport management or leadership roles using transferable skills gained throughout the programme. The opportunities in football coaching and scouting roles within professional football academies are also a possibility.  


UK/EU students

Please consult each degree page for fees

£9,250 per year
Apply now
International Students

Please consult each degree page for fees

£14,250 per year
Apply now

The UA92 Club scholarship programme

As a partner of The Football Association, UCFB is proud to be able to provide a limited number of scholarships to players who have previously been released from any of the 92 clubs in the Premier League and English Football League, including their academies. UCFB works closely with these clubs to provide future career paths in the football industry for these talented players, whilst ensuring that their development as a player is not hindered.

Further information on the value of the UA92 Club Scholarship for 2019 entry will be announced in due course. Accommodation, sustenance, flights, visa costs and personal expenses will not be included in the scholarship.

UCFB utilises its wide network to ensure that UA92 Club Scholars are able to continue to play at a competitive level and get coached by current and past Premier League and English Football League Managers, ensuring that they have the best chance of succeeding in their careers whether in a playing or professional capacity.

For further information on the UA92 Club Scholarship programme, please complete our enquiry form.

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If you are interested or would like to learn more about the UCFB Undergraduate Academy, please complete our enquiry form.

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