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Did you know that the average European football academy counts around 250 players and the reality is that less than 1% are foreigners? In total, there are only about 30 football academies in each major football country in Europe: France, the United Kingdom, Spain and Germany. Needless to say, space is extremely limited, and opportunities and chances for international players are even more limited. Most of the time, professional clubs in Europe search for talents on a regional or national level, which already provides them with sufficient talents to fill up their rosters. So, unless an international player’s entire family moves to Europe, they may never have the opportunity to be exposed to a D1 or D2 professional European club, even if they have the talent and potential.

This is why the International Center of European Football is a groundbreaking football academy, changing the entire professional landscape for international players, bringing them new and unique opportunities to be exposed and recruited.

ICEF International Center of European Football - Boarding soccer academy in Europe

What is the role of football academies?

Joining a football academy is the ultimate goal for every football player in Europe, as they provide the highest level of training that players can receive to prepare them for professional careers. They are the guide to reaching peak performance and the path to becoming a professional player. Professional football academies are always associated with professional clubs, as their main objective is to feed the clubs’ first teams. To guarantee the highest quality of training to all players, the academies are under strict regulations established by the official football federations.

Each year, thousands of the best players in Europe try out to get selected, through an extremely exhaustive screening process where only a strict minority earn their spot. They all have a clear objective in mind: to become a professional player.

ICEF, the first football academy developed for international players

The International Center of European Football is a unique and brand new opportunity for international student-athletes born between 1997 and 2009. ICEF’s programs implement the best-in-class European methodology, designed and led by UEFA / FFF certified technical directors. The 10-month Pro Residency program is designed to foster and expertly develop high-potential football players with the same clearly defined goal as professional football academies: to kickstart professional football careers in Europe.

ICEF is the only academy in Europe where players:

  • 1. Compete at the highest level of youth competition in France;
  • 2. Maximize exposure to top professional D1 & D2 European clubs;
  • 3. Learn European football through the excellence of the European methodology;
  • 4. Receive best-in-class preparation by a UEFA/ FFF licensed technical staff;
  • 5. Pursue their education in Europe (Middle & High School, Bachelor’s & Master’s degrees);
  • 6. Live in a safe campus in the Greater Geneva area, in phase-3 of reopening.

ICEF’s technical directors carefully build competition programs with highly regarded professional D1 and D2 partner clubs, allowing players to participate  in at least 25 competitive games and 3 European football tournaments, that provide unique exposure opportunities for ICEF student-athletes.

The most advanced players enrolled in the 10-month Pro Residency program are selected to join ICEF’s club, Thonon Evian Grand Geneve FC, competing at the French national level in official leagues established by the French Federation of Football. Thonon Evian Grand Geneve FC is also the biggest soccer club in the Greater Geneva area, with partner clubs including Paris Saint-Germain FC, AS Monaco, FC Lyon, Servette Genève, Strasbourg, Grenoble, Paris FC, OL Olympique Lyonnais, ASSE, Clermont Ferrand, Nîmes Olympique, Cagliari Calcio.