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FIFPro’s Global Employment Report – a worldwide survey

The 2016 FIFPro Global Employment Report looks at the life of players in a way that has never been done before.

Towards the end of 2016, FIFPro released the findings of its first worldwide survey of working conditions in men’s professional football. The aim of the survey was to raise awareness around the realities faced by footballers – especially those who are not among the elite at the top of the sport – with a view to better understanding and improving conditions across the industry.

Independently assessed by the University of Manchester in England, the survey is based on feedback from nearly 14,000 current players in 54 countries and 87 leagues in Europe, the Americas and Africa. It is believed to be the world’s largest survey of professional athletes in any sport using direct participant data.

“This report for the first time provides a detailed and accurate picture of what the average professional player experiences,” FIFPro General-Secretary Theo Van Seggelen said.

From Europe, footballers in Austria, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, FYROM, Georgia, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Kazakhstan, Malta, Montenegro, Norway, Poland, Romania, Russia, Scotland, Serbia, Slovenia, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, Ukraine took place in the survey.

The main findings per country focus on player nationality, contract information (length, type), working conditions, income, health/well-being/outlook, violence and harassment and match-fixing. The results for the European countries can be found here and FIFPro has also prepared an interactive map for all countries on its website.

Antonia Hagemann, CEO of SD Europe commented: “The issues SD Europe and FIFPro agreed on three years ago are still relevant: We encourage not only the authorities, but also our members and national and local supporters’ organisations we assist, to work together with the national players’ associations in order to help improve the governance, financial health and credibility of football clubs and to jointly take action to tackle violence, discrimination and match-fixing. We will continue doing so at European level“.

In 2013, SD Europe and FIFPro signed a Memorandum of Understanding, mutually recognising that the challenges faced by European football affect players and supporters in equally serious, albeit different, ways. The two parties committed: a) To promote improved governance and sustainable financing of professional football in Europe b) To further the involvement of players and supporters in decision and policy making frameworks c) To confront societal problems affecting the relationship between supporters and players such as discrimination, violence or hate speech d) To explore joint interests in football as a cultural good and economic product, incl. broadcasting, property rights, new media, etc. e) To contribute to the continuing fight against match fixing and other threats to football’s integrity.

The full FIFPro survey is available to view/download here and the top findings here.

SD Europe is an organisation that assists democratic supporters’ groups in achieving formal structured involvement in their clubs and associations, and developing member ownership of football clubs. Established in 2007 with support from UEFA, SD Europe also advises clubs on their ownership and governance structure and works with football governing bodies, leagues, UEFA, and European institutions. Currently, it is active in over 20 European countries and is responsible for the implementation of the Supporter Liaison Officer requirement (Art. 35, UEFA Club Licensing and Financial Fair Play Regulations). For more information, contact us and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.


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