2 Fußbälle liegen im Tor.

DFB encourages researchers to apply for the UEFA research grant programme


We support applications for the UEFA RGP by reviewing project ideas for practical value and providing letters of recommendation. 

UEFA Academy annually awards a number of grants with two programmes:

All research projects regarding the UEFA RGP must be supported by a national association by means of a letter of recommendation. In order to receive a letter of recommendation from the DFB, the UEFA requirements must be met and the research project must be approved by the DFB.

  1. Who: Researchers at a university or equivalent institution

    Fields & topics: 

    • Economics
    • History
    • Law
    • Management
    • Political Science
    • Psychology
    • Sociology

    How long: 9 months research

    Grant: Up to 15.000€ (joint grant of up to 20.000€)

    Application deadline DFB: 15 Feb 2024

    Application deadline UEFA: 15 Mar 2024

  2. Who: Researchers holding a research position at a university, football club, national association or equivalent institution

    Fields & topics: 

    • Football Medicine
    • Football Performance
    • Impact in Football, with the aim to implement health or performance-based evidence in football

    How long: 1 year research

    Grant: Up to 30.000€

    Application deadline DFB: No letter of recommendation needed. We encourage researchers to discuss their project ideas for practical value.

    Application deadline UEFA: 15 Mar 2024

Ein seitliche Aufnahme eines Fußballtores, vor dem viele Bälle liegen.


Applications for a letter of recommendation from the DFB must be submitted by email to Research@dfb.de, along with a one-page executive summary.

The one-page executive summary must mention:

  • the justification for the research (contribution to national associations and European football in general, specifying how they will particularly benefit from the research and why)
  • the research question(s) and hypothesis(-es)
  • the planned methodology
  • the total financial contribution expected

current topics

Please note that the DFB (division National Teams & Akademie) is currently working on the following topics. We would be happy to see these topics addressed.

  • Performance diagnostics on young players: Since 2003 the DFB conducts bi-yearly consistent performance diagnostic tests on the top 5% most talented players per age group (age 12-16). Research has been conducted to quantify the predictiveness of these metrics for future success of the players. With the rise of AI-supported testings there is a lot more potential to collect more granular data with less effort. The research question is to identify which skills predict a player’s success and how those could be measured effectively.

  • Contextualisation of the female cycle in professional football: For too long, we have applied training principles on male players and used the insights to train female players. Future projects are aimed to educate and empower players, coaches, and support staff on how to optimally train women as women, ensuring health, wellbeing, and performance of female players. A special focus should be placed on the impact of the menstrual cycle on women's participation and performance. 

  • The influence of league structures for young talents: Within European federations league structures, especially those relevant for young players developing (U17 until first league), differ significantly. For example in Germany, four fourth leagues (”Regionalliga”) with a significant amount of professional clubs are merged into only one third league (”3. Liga”). On the other hand, federations like Portugal offer dedicated U23 competitions with all teams invited to participate. The research question is to identify whether and for which age, playing time in the respective competitions is a predictor for future success of young talents. Accordingly, recommendations of optimal league structures can be derived using evidence.

  • The influence of small-sided games for young players: Different domestic competitions introduce a huge range of different “competition” set-ups for young players. For example,  “Funinio” is a concept that has been introduced and widely applied. The question of this project is to research evidence on measurable influence factors off the game size on playing features (e.g. physical demand, ball touches per player, dribbling situation, tactical context, …).

  • Financial quantification of success in European competitions: Football clubs and federations have become companies with a substantial financial aspect. The financial well-being of clubs depends primarily on success on the pitch, both due to direct compensation like win bonuses or participation in media deals, but also via indirect compensation like sponsoring deals or increased market values of players. In order to better quantify the monetary value of a team’s or player’s performance, the objective of this research is to provide an approximation of the value of a point / a goal per competition.