International Centre for
Sports Studies

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Tue. 02 April 2024


Lorenzo Cavallari

Current Position: Regional Manager Europe, FIFA Member Associations Division

Year of graduation: 2021 (21st Edition)

Nationality: Italian

What does your current role involve?

I joined FIFA’s Member Associations Division immediately after graduating from the FIFA Master, first in Zurich, and now following the Division’s move to France, I am based in the Paris office. As MA Regional Manager for Europe, my role is focused on managing the relationship between FIFA and its 55 European Member Associations, which we do through three key areas of responsibility.

Firstly, serving as an advisor and primary contact for the Member Associations (MAs). This includes facilitating communication between the MAs and FIFA’s multiple departments to access the different services available to them. This can include advising and guiding the MAs on a wide range of sporting, financial and political matters, as well as acting as FIFA’s representative at General Assemblies and other institutional events.

Secondly, working on strengthening the relationship between FIFA, the MAs, and other European football stakeholders (UEFA, ECA, Leagues) through the delivery of ad-hoc initiatives. These are difficult to define exhaustively, given they are based on the specific needs of the MAs, but examples from my time at FIFA have ranged from hosting knowledge-sharing workshops, launching an awards programme, or even supporting the creation of a new competition format.

Finally, we are responsible for managing FIFA’s flagship development programme, FIFA Forward, which reinvests the proceeds from the World Cup cycle into financing a wide range of football development projects across the world. This includes consulting the federations on their strategic investment priorities, supporting and approving their funding applications, and then monitoring the implementation of the projects on-site and reporting on them.

Which aspects of the FIFA Master course have helped you most in your career?

The FIFA Master was crucial in allowing me to transition my career from consulting to sport, thanks to both the recognition which the FIFA Master enjoys within the industry, as well as the holistic understanding of the sports ecosystem that it equips you with. That said, if I must single out the most valuable aspect of the course, it’s certainly the personal connections it enables you to build and the network it gives you access to.

The course alumni network is a really tight-knit and helpful community of over six hundred sports professionals from around the world. It’s difficult to emphasize just how embedded across the industry it is. You will often find yourself reaching out to or interacting with friends and classmates in a work setting, as well as being at most one degree of separation or WhatsApp message away from having access to nearly any organisation in the industry.

What advice would you give to future students on the course?

Although I won’t win any prizes for originality here, the FIFA Master truly is a once in a lifetime experience, so my only advice is to treat is as such and make a conscious effort to fully live every moment, even if that means stepping out of your comfort zone at times. Anyone who has done the course will tell you that the year goes by incredibly quickly, so try not to pressure yourself too much or too early on with the job search or grades, but rather immerse yourself in the experience of the FIFA Master and trust the process. This applies both to the classroom and - perhaps more importantly - outside of it. The field visits, social events, improvised trips, and small daily life moments that you share with your classmates while rolling and tumbling across three countries will create a unique bond between all of you and are as much part of the experience as the academic content.

FIFA Master - International Master in Management, Law and Humanities of Sport, ranked  Europe's No.1 course a record 11 times by SportBusiness.

Organised by CIES in partnership with De Montfort University (UK), SDA Bocconi School of Management (Italy) and the University of Neuchâtel (Switzerland).



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