My experience at RCD Espanyol Barcelona has pleasantly exceeded my expectations. I always aspired to work at club level and experience first-hand how the business and day-to-day operations of a club function. Fortunately, through my FBA internship I have been able to get involved in the strategic planning of the overall business and learn from a club that manages a variety of valuable assets and is constantly working to compete and meet the demands of La Liga market.
I started my internship in the commercial and marketing area, where I learned that the fundamental value and business model that RCD Espanyol follows is based on its grassroots football. The economic sustenance, as well as the footballing essence of the Club, lies in the training and development of the players at a very young age until they make their path to the first team. For this reason, the club has one of the most important youth academies in the country and works with professional coaches so that the players incorporate the club’s football values and methodologies!
Based on this concept, the club has started to open international academies all over the world to embody RCD Espanyol’s successful youth system. My tasks were to:
- Calculate the market share.
- Understand and quantify the impact on the community where the academy was located.
- Track the reach on the different social networks and monitor the correct application of the know-how that the club has developed in detail.
- Conduct market analysis for potential openings of academies in new regions of the world.
The club has a global network and a strong presence with strategic partnerships in key affluent regions. Therefore, I had to interact with investors and government representatives.
During the week I usually had to work from the RCDE Stadium where my office was located and from there perform my administrative tasks, such as: planning budgets to set up youth tournaments, editing the club’s official website, writing the RCD Espanyol Newsletter, welcoming potential investors and showing them around the club’s facilities while introducing them to the vision of RCD Espanyol.
But other times, I had to go to the Ciudad Esportiva Dani Jarque and work in the club’s high-performance center. One could say that it is the heart of the club and where the magic of football is experienced. It is the place where the men’s and women’s first team trains and where young players are developed. In the sports complex I had to ensure that the Clinic Programme was performing optimally and that the groups had the best possible experience. The RCD Espanyol Clinics is a training programme for closed groups that allows the athlete to feel like an Espanyol player and enjoy the exclusive opportunity to train at the Club’s official facilities. The training sessions are led by RCD Espanyol Escola coaches with UEFA license, following the methodology of the youth categories.
A special highlight of my internship was to participate in the inauguration of the Espanyol hub, where a gaming centre for competitive e-gaming was created. The club seeks to be part of the new trends set by the new generations and to grow in an emerging market.
It has been a fantastic time where I have been able to gain a lot of knowledge and insights in a variety of diverse fields. Arguably, my internship has been very encompassing, as it has required me to handle several different skills. The club has treated me wonderfully since the very beginning make my journey with them an experience that I will never forget.
Nicolás is a 10th Edition Candidate of The FBA’s Professional Master in Football Business. Reach out to him via LinkedIn.
RCD Espanyol has joined The FBA Family back in February 2022.