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Improving English Communication Skills in UK Football

With two transfer windows taking place in the year, many football clubs are buying new players whose English communication skills need some improvement. When players sign for a club outside their native country, they are immediately faced with a language barrier as they try to deal with media coverage, communications on (and off) the pitch and a new culture. In the short term, clubs provide translation services for players to deal with the media but this often doesn’t extend to communication with teammates and managers.
Manchester City Football team line up

CLT Ltd have been improving the English communication skills of Premier League footballers for the last 10 years. We started working with the First Team Support Manager at Manchester City FC in 2008. Clare contacted CLT as the club required foreign football players to improve their English communication skills. The objective was to improve communication on the pitch, in training sessions and during pre-match briefings at the Premier League Club. During that time many First Team players have improved their English skills. Players include Pablo Zabaleta, David Silva and goalkeeper Willy Caballero. Since then we have worked with other Clubs including West Ham United FC, Stoke City FC, Bolton Wanderers FC and Nottingham Forest FC.

‘English for Football’ Programmes

CLT Ltd design tailor-made fully flexible ‘English for Football’ programmes which include weekly sessions at the training ground during the season following their football training, at their home or online. We pitch the training at the correct level for each individual. We also provide preparation for the Tier 2 UK VISA exam. Lessons include general English and communication skills for adapting to life in the UK. They also focus on football related vocabulary and preparation for press interviews. We have also taught the players’ families general English to allow them to settle in the UK more easily.

At CLT Ltd we provide a free assessment of the players’ current skills and we will design a “top-up” training programme of weekly or intensive sessions to get the players to the level required. We offer full flexibility in terms of what time/day the player prefers. Once the course starts, you can change the time/day if required because of the training or match schedule.  CLT Ltd work closely with the Player Support Team to select tutors. For example, the delegate may wish a tutor who has the ability to speak their native language.

All our tutors sign a Non-Disclosure Agreement so you can be assured that any details which the tutors come to know about the players will remain highly confidential.  Copies of the Non-Disclosure Agreements are available for the player at any time.

What did the clubs say about us?

CLT are a stand out, friendly and efficient company. They have always listened and understood our requirements and needs. I have worked with Jane, Annie and the team for many years now and they have never failed us in regards to finding us the right language teachers to match our employees. We have many players and staff who come to the UK to work with us with limited English and thanks to this great team behind the scenes and the tutors, they have turned some of our players, with little English, into superstars off the pitch as well as on it. When they do their first interview in English or pass an English test they never thought they would be able to do, the confidence in them once done is great to see and can’t be beaten! CLT are a really solid, reliable company who come with my highest recommendation.

Clare Marsden, First Team Support Manager, Manchester City FC


Commercial language training have helped us at West Ham United FC now for two years and it’s been very successful. Their service is personal and efficient and the quality of classes they deliver has proven very good for staff and players/players’ families alike. We’d highly recommend their service to anyone looking to improve their languages! Thank you Jane and Annie!

Barney Bossom, Player Care Assistant, West Ham United FC

If you have any requirements for English or foreign language training, interpreting or translating please get in touch on 0203 036 0770 or email us on info@languagetraining.com