Football is the most popular sport on the planet. FIFA estimates that there are 3.5 billion fans worldwide. It comes as no surprise that for many students, football plays a real part in deciding where they wish to study. In this series we are going to be looking at some of the top footballing universities in the UK and worldwide, this week looking at the University of Birmingham. 

The University of Birmingham is an excellent choice for football fanatics. Whether it be wanting to have a simple kick about or trying to progress to professional status, the university has something to offer everyone.  

The university currently has 5 official teams representing Birmingham. These are run by head coach, Chris Bradley. Chris has been an excellent addition to Birmingham’s football program due to his extensive career in working with teams such as Aston Villa, Wolverhampton, and even the Australian national team at the 2014 World Cup. 

The 5 men’s team consists of 3 squads who play in the BUCS leagues; Midlands Tier 1 Division 1a, Midlands Tier 2 Division 2b, and Midlands Tier 3 Division 3b. The other two teams are development squads, where players may find an opportunity to play in the top 3 teams.  

The university squads take the game very seriously and train three to four times a week, as well as play on either a Wednesday or Saturday. The club’s regular training sessions aim to give its players plenty of opportunities to grow and improve as players, whilst also creating a cohesive, friendly, and competitive environment. 

Players interested in playing for one of the teams should sign up for trials at the beginning of the academic year. Players already competing at a high level can contact the squad for an opportunity to be invited to pre-season training with the squad.  

University of Birmingham women’s football features 4 squads, with the top 3 all competing in BUCS and the 4th being a development team. This allows all those looking to get involved in football the opportunity to play. The club aims to provide a friendly and social environment, focused on catering to players of all levels. 

Finally, for those looking to just enjoy playing football and not worry about playing in the university squads, there are several options. The university puts on football sessions where they invite everyone to play, regardless of gender or ability. the university hosts a 6-side campus league in which students are invited to create their squads and compete every week. There are also several individual football societies in which students can join and compete. 

Men’s football: https://sportandfitness.bham.ac.uk/sport/discover-sport/football-mens/  

Women’s football: https://sportandfitness.bham.ac.uk/sport/discover-sport/womens-football/  

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