‘Grazie’ to Erasmus+ and AC Milan

Vi-Ability Student, Jordan, 20, reflects on his Work placement in Milano

Tuesday the 27th of October was an irrelevant day for most. However, it was the dawn of a life-changing experience. The students of Vi-ability’s ''St. Matthews project'' were prepared to visit the fashion capital of the world, all eyes set on one of the biggest football clubs, AC Milan.

The trip itself was the pinnacle of our journey with Vi- Ability, having taken part in the organisation’s eight-week “Football industry education programme.” This is a programme in which students learn about the commercial side of sport, undertaking modules such as; Community engagement, enterprise, marketing and career development opportunities. The reason for a trip to Milan was to learn how an extremely successful club runs overseas, allowing us to put the knowledge gained into practise and further build on this knowledge through hands-on experiences alongside the Italian giants. 

Once in Milan, the group were clearly excited and eager to begin the work placement and these feelings only grew once the group learned the plan for the fortnight. The itinerary showed a great variety of activities, ensuring that everyone, with any type of interest in the world of sport would be catered for. Sessions were based around Italian football, the style of play, the marketing of the club and sport psychology, as well as physiology and nutritional sessions which were taught by those involved with AC Milan at the very top of their field of work.

We learned from a top Italian coach about the football philosophy and style of play, as well as observing the best in the country for their age and participating in top class coaching sessions put on especially for the Vi-Ability group. The group discussed the differences in culture, the reasons for this and were keen to learn from these coaches with a view to implementing these sessions back at home.

One of the highlight’s of the trip for most was the opportunity to visit the AC Milan academy, which was of course home to top class facilities and the best of the best. Being involved with one of one of Europe’s elite is a dream for so many people, however vi- ability were able to make this a reality which was incredible for the group.

Having been integrated with the club set up for a fortnight, on the eve of our final day were finally able to make our way to the San Siro Stadium, home of ‘the Rossoneri’ as well as bitter rivals Inter Milan. The game itself ended in a bore draw, however being in the stadium and watching this famous club was anything but boring, witnessing players whose shoes we would love to fill. On the final day, we had the opportunity to feel like the best. Touring the stadium, gracing the famous turf and feeling like a star.

This was an amazing way to finish the trip, however this trip will be just the start for the group. The experience gained from our fortnight, learning from the best and gaining life skills that in the past would have been a mystery! This hands-on experience really has built the foundations and self-belief within us to tackle the sports industry and holds massive prospects for our future careers. 

 

By Jordan Saunders