Loughborough to host world's first professional course for sports agents in London

Loughborough University and the Association of Football Agents will launch a professional certificate for aspiring football agents later this year.

The 10-week course will begin on 4 October 2018 and will be held at Loughborough University London. The programme is believed to be the first partnership of its kind between a higher education institution and professional trade organisation. Participants will learn about the legal and practical workings of what it takes to be an agent, and will focus on the three core pillars of the agency profession and market:


Regulatory frameworks

Covering legal frameworks governing agents in different sports and explaining to comply with the regulation.

Contemporary legal issues

Analysing a range of issues including player/athlete representation and contracts, dealing with minors, financial crime and corruption in the transfer market, and betting and match-fixing and how to deal with them.

Business practices

Explaining the practicalities of being an agent including negotiating transfers, approaching clubs, managing parents, understanding the psychology of players, and expanding a professional network.

Course leader Dr Serhat Yilmaz, of Loughborough’s School of Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences (SSEHS), said:

The programme intends to raise the professional standard of the agent market through education.

The number of agents within the sport industry has significantly increased over the years, but there is still a lack of constructive initiatives helping them to develop and maintain knowledge and skills to operate in a very dynamic and international transfer market.

The programme aims to fill this gap, and is staffed by some of the industry’s most experienced legal practitioners and serving professionals.

Dr Serhat Yilmaz

Alongside the academic team from Loughborough, also including Professor Chris Harwood, and Dr Elisavet Manoli, Barrister Nick De Marco QC of Blackstone Chambers, Mel Stein of Clintons and the President of the AFA, Daniel Geey of Sheridans, William McAuliffe of Levy Kauffman-Kohler are all the part of programme teaching roster.

The AFA Chairman Mike Miller said:

We are very pleased that an education course is offered now for our members. We have been advocating for a better regulatory framework of agents in football with an element of continuous education.

Mike Miller, Chairman of the AFA

There are no formal academic prerequisites for the programme, however, some business experience and numerical proficiency are recommended.

Further information about the course including guidance on the application process can be found here.

View the press release on the Loughborough University website for further information and resources.

Loughborough is one of the country’s leading universities, with an international reputation for research that matters, excellence in teaching, strong links with industry, and unrivalled achievement in sport and its underpinning academic disciplines.

It has been awarded five stars in the independent QS Stars university rating scheme, named the best university in the world for sports-related subjects in the 2020 QS World University Rankings and top in the country for its student experience in the 2018 THE Student Experience Survey.

Loughborough is in the top 10 of every national league table, being ranked 4th in the Guardian University League Table 2020, 5th in the Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2020 and 8th in The UK Complete University Guide 2020.

Loughborough is consistently ranked in the top twenty of UK universities in the Times Higher Education’s ‘table of tables’ and is in the top 10 in England for research intensity. In recognition of its contribution to the sector, Loughborough has been awarded seven Queen's Anniversary Prizes.

Specialising exclusively in postgraduate-level study, Loughborough University London is based on the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park and offers cutting-edge master’s and PhD degrees, as well as business collaboration, research and enterprise opportunities.

The seven specialist institutes at Loughborough University London include: Design Innovation, Digital Technologies, Diplomacy and International Governance, Innovation and Entrepreneurship, International Management, Media and Creative Industries, and Sport Business. Close industry partnerships with a wealth of leading businesses and creative organisations means teaching and learning is informed by real-life challenges and driven by true industry pressures.