Ranked 7th in the United Kingdom and 35th in the world by the Financial Times for its MBA (Master of Business Administration) programme, Alliance Manchester Business School (AMBS) secured third place at the International Football Challenge. The tournament, which has been organised by the AMBS sports committee, saw students from the best business schools across Europe taking off their suits and putting on their football boots to compete in an 11-a-side competition at Salford Sports Village.
The two MBA teams from Alliance Manchester Business School managed to get through the group stage after beating Warwick 4-1 and Edinburgh 1-0. However, both the MBA class of 2016 and the MBA class of 2017 failed to get into the final, after two tight games against University of Oxford Business School and IE University. With a 4-2 against Oxford (winner of two editions of the trophy), the Spanish university put its name on the fifth edition of the International Football Challenge.Photo: Manchester Business School
AMBS Vice-president of sport David Valdivia, who organised the event with MBA students Stefania Miravalle, Francisco Ponce, Willis Arum and Rupsha Das said: “We have been a bit unlucky, especially in the semifinal against Oxford, where we did not deserve to lose. We played really well and we created many chances. Unfortunately, we also missed a penalty when the game was 0-0.”
“However, this was the first tournament for our team, and I have noticed some good improvements from the group stage to the semi-final. It has been a good preparation for the MBA Olympic Games that will take place in Paris this May. I think that with some more twists, and if we arrange the team a little bit better, we can try to win that competition”.
Therefore, manager Gonzalo Vargas has already started the preparation to take captain Chris Matthews and his teammates on the top of the MBA football rankings. It would be the first time for our business school. In the past it has been always complicated to compete with other European schools such as HEC Paris or IE whose MBA class is four times bigger than the AMBS one.
However, MBS International football challenge has also been an opportunity to promote Manchester as a leading football capital in the world. Indeed, the welcome event took place at the National Football Museum with a speech from speaker of the year in 2014 Andrew Thorp, and the participant teams had also the chance to visit what Thorp called “the theatre of dreams”, that is Old Trafford.
The event was not only encouraging on the level of football though, for during the weekend, there was also room for some more business-related talks.
Speaking to the Mancunion, David Valdivia said: “The event has also been a great opportunity for networking with alumni and students from other countries and universities. It has been a unique chance to share ideas on business competitions and to create business opportunities for the future”.
This further proof of the power of football to connect people, nations, and even the business leaders of tomorrow.