The role of the supporter liaison officer (SLO) was one of the topics on the agenda at the Lega Serie B general assembly held in Milan on 9 July. Federico Smanio, head of marketing and SLO coordinator for Lega Serie B, gave a general presentation on the SLO project, explaining its current status in Italy and analysing the role of an SLO and the direct and indirect benefits to the clubs and Italian football as a whole.
Giovanni Spitaleri, head of security at the Italian Football Federation (FIGC), reiterated the support and commitment of the FIGC to the implementation of the SLO project in Italy, making particular reference to the successful SLO seminar held in May with the participation of Lena Gustafson-Wiberg (SLO, Djurgardens IF, Sweden), Dariusz Lapinski (SLO Coordinator, Polish Football Association), Marc Francis (SLO, Eintracht Frankfurt, Germany), Massimo Dall’Oglio (SLO, FC Chiasso, Switzerland), and Stuart Dykes (SLO Consultant, SD Europe).
Representatives of Supporters in Campo (a national umbrella organisation established in 2013 and currently representing fourteen democratic supporters’ organisations) were also present at the general assembly. Mr Smanio underlined throughout his presentation the need to work closely with Supporters in Campo, along with other stakeholders. These include SD Europe, who following the approval of the SLO requirement by UEFA’s Executive Committee in 2010 have been appointed to facilitate its introduction across UEFA’s 54 member associations. To find out more about SD Europe’s role in the SLO project, click here.
SD Europe and Supporters in Campo will continue to work closely with the governing bodies in Italian football in the future, advising them on the SLO project and providing the necessary tools for the development of a tailored action plan for the coming season and beyond. Last week’s meeting represents another small but positive step towards inclusion and dialogue between all stakeholders, including supporters.