DFL Deutsche Fußball Liga is participating in the international EU project TRANSFER (Transnational Football Exchange and Role-Sharing), which was initiated in January 2021 by the European supporters’ organisation SD Europe. The aim of the project is to enhance and improve the work of supporter liaison officers and safety and security officers at clubs, national associations and leagues. Building on a pilot project, TRANSFER is a European Union “Preparatory Action” in the field of exchanges and mobility in sport. The basis and the strength of the initiative is the exchange of people, ideas and good practices. The project is co-funded by the European Union and UEFA.
Intercultural exchange between the partner countries
TRANSFER will invest in the professional development and capacity-building of supporter liaison officers (SLOs) and safety and security officers (SSOs) at clubs, national associations and leagues in six European countries through a novel programme of transnational exchange visits. Under the project, a minimum of 72 football club and governing body employees will benefit from the opportunity to undertake a multi-day placement at their counterparts in the partner countries. The following project partners will participate in the exchange:
• DFL Deutsche Fußball Liga
• English Premier League (EPL)
• Football Association of Serbia (FSS)
• Football Association of the Czech Republic (FACR)
• French Football League (LFP)
• Scottish Football Association (SFA)
• Supporters Direct Scotland (SD Scotland)
Being involved in organising and realising football matches in the partner countries will allow the participating employees to get to know country-specific event concepts and make intercultural comparisons.
The project aims to achieve the following targets and effects:
1. Improved matchday operations benefiting clubs and football supporters across Europe.
2. The more structured implementation of regular exchanges in SLO education in the participating countries and beyond.
3. An increased awareness of an integrated approach to safety, security and service at football matches.
The project will work towards these impacts by:
1. identifying the learning needs of the participants
2. generating intercultural impetus for the participants’ own work
3. validating the learning outcomes (through formative assessment led by an education assessment expert)
4. documenting the experiences and learning outcomes of the project and feeding them into political work at a European level with the support of a special advisor
Project manager and SD Europe Head of SLO Development Stuart Dykes said: “This project will help to raise standards in the area of supporter liaison and contribute to smoother matchday operations by bringing club and governing body staff together to exchange information and experiences in a spirit of international cooperation and acquire new skills that will enhance their personal development.”
Ansgar Schwenken, DFL Director of Football Affairs & Supporters and Member of the Management Board, welcomed the project, which is supported and backed by the DFL Fan Affairs department: “We are looking forward to this project and, in particular, the opportunity to exchange experiences with European partners in the areas of fan liaison and safety and security. This kind of intercultural exchange and getting to know different priorities and perspectives on fan liaison and safety and security work can help us to continuously examine and enhance the already high standard of this work in Germany while allowing us to pass on our own knowledge and experience.”
About the TRANSFER EU programme
TRANSFER was developed in response to a call for proposals to implement the Preparatory Action “Exchanges and mobility in sport” in accordance with Commission Decision C(2020)1194 of 4 March 2020 on the adoption of the 2020 annual work programme for the implementation of pilot projects and preparatory actions in the area of education, sport and culture. Under the current circumstances surrounding the coronavirus pandemic, the programme of exchange visits will commence only once it is fully safe to do so.
(DFL Deutsche Fußball Liga)