Master Class Sporting Director

Master Class Sporting Director

What is the master class about?

This master class is an educational track which will provide the participant a full understanding of the journey of the sporting director’s position. The sporting director covers 3 main area’s:

  1. Leadership and management of the sport technical departments of the first team and the academy within a football club. Taking responsibility for strategic, financial and people management decisions.
  2. Creating and sustaining a high performing first team environment. Taking responsibility for initiating and safeguarding the club’s football philosophy and recruiting the playing squad and coaching staff.
  3. Supervising a productive academy within a football club. Ensuring that an individual career pathway from the academy to the first team is operational.

Who should attend?

The master class sporting director is designed specifically for football professionals who are currently performing / are new in the position of / have the ambition to become a sporting director in professional football. The program has been developed by Double Pass in close collaboration with international experts. It is based upon the combination of 15 years of academic research and day to day practice on the field in environments like the German, English, Belgian, Spanish, Danish, Brazilian, Japanese professional football markets. Each session is designed to enhance the participants’ understanding of the role and to stimulate a solution focused mindset, challenged by case studies while developing a wide range of (hard and soft) skills.


  • Leadership

    During this program you will explore the sporting director’s position:

    • What are the area’s to cover?
    • What is the organizational design to perform in?
    • Who are your direct reports and connections?
    • What are your accountabilities? What do you aspire?

    Once the context and role has been explored , leadership styles will be revealed and discussed. To reveal the leadership styles we use different sets of profiling, which will be explained by a sports psychologist with professional experience in football. 


    • Design your role as a sporting director based upon your leadership style and management skills;
    • Come to a clear understanding of the context and structure you work in;
    • Gain understanding of different personality profiles within your team in order to come to a more effective team composition and to optimize team performance;
    • Design your personal portfolio and development plan.
  • Club Strategy and Management

    This program will provide you insights on the different business models within football, based upon academic research, mapped with existing business cases. The business models are translated to the area’s you have to cover and  the accountabilities you have to manage as a sporting director. You will be challenged to design your club’s football business model or the one you prefer to work in. Strategy, organizational design, people and financial management within a professional football club will be discussed together with your direct connections. Therefore CEOs, first team coaches, academy directors, CFOs will join the expert team.  


    • Explore all building blocks of a business model, a strategic plan and a financial plan seen from the perspective of a sporting director;
    • Gain insights into designing a football club’s formal and informal organizational structure in a proactive way;
    • Interpret the main drivers, aims and ambitions of your key connections (owner, board, CEO, academy director, etc.) within the club;
    • Define clear profiles of key people working in your sport technical staff (e.g. first team head coach) connected to the business model of the club.
  • Football and Performance

    The football philosophy, the end product of your football technical department, will be the key topic of this module. What are the building blocks of a football philosophy and for which ones are you accountable as a sporting director? Furthermore we provide you insights into setting up a health and performance model connected to the club’s football philosophy. 


    • Gain understanding of the Double Pass football model and the building blocks of a football philosophy;
    • Define your role as a sporting director related to the areas of ‘football philosophy’ and ‘health and performance’;
    • Come to a design of player profiles, taking into account all parameters seen from the health and performance angle;
    • Gain an understanding of the vision on ‘readiness to perform’.
  • Talent ID and Recruitment

    What is the decision making process when designing your first team squad? Is it based on your football philosophy? On player profiles? Is it driven by data? Or finances? 

    One of the main accountabilities of a sporting director is the management of the first team squad. Therefore, talent identification and player recruitment are key areas to cover and the development of a ‘talent ID and recruitment plan’ is indispensable. 

    You will be confronted with the challenge of utilizing data and technology in the recruitment process.  

    We will also share insights about transfer regulations from a legal perspective. Legal experts in the transfer regulation market will examine different cases with you.  


    • Define your own ‘talent ID and recruitment plan’;
    • Gain insights into the latest developments of scouting technology;
    • Build up your scouting department and define procedures in line with rules and regulations of the transfer market;
    • Receive advice from legal experts based upon real-life cases;
    • Gain confidence in dealing with transfer deadlines and FIFA negotiations.
  • connection between first team and academy

    Producing players ‘in-house’ for your first team? Is this a productive business or not? In this module, you will explore the potential return-on-investment (ROI) of your academy and will find ammunition to convince your board to invest in the academy. Creating awareness is not enough. To realise the transition from the academy to the first team, structures and decision making mechanisms must be installed. Talents need the right environment to unfold and to perform in a professional environment but they can also make a difference in being a successful and financially sustainable football club. Ask experienced sporting directors how they succeeded in bringing those talents to their first team! 


    • Gain knowledge of potential return on investment of running an academy and how it can impact player recruitment and retention;
    • Understand how to set up a functioning technical board;
    • Define a clear (internal and external) pathway for academy players to the first team;
    • Gain understanding of the role of a sporting director in supervising the creation of an individual integration plan for top talents.
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