RIASA Men's Undergraduate Soccer Programme.

UK College Soccer Academy Based in Leeds.

Earn a dual-accredited US/UK degree in International Sports Management and play a 9-month college soccer season in the UK.

UK Soccer. US Education.

Live, Play & Study in the United Kingdom.

Embark on a Life Changing Journey 

Join the world’s only soccer academy offering a dual accredited US/UK degree in International Sports Management. 

Play for 9 months

Give yourself the best chance of succeeding on the pitch! Join the world's only college soccer program offering a dual accredited US/UK degree whilst you train and compete for 9-months of the calendar year.

On average, we train 4 times per week and compete between 1–2 times. Our soccer programme is perfect for aspiring soccer players or individuals who want to break into the sporting industry. 

Professional-standard soccer academy

The RIASA soccer undergraduate programme allows student-athletes to experience a professional academy set-up. 

As soon as you join our academy, you'll be thrown in to intense training sessions and competitive league fixtures that will help you grow on and off the field. 

Our coaches are at the top of their game with over 100+ years of coaching experience, which enables you to develop each time you step on to the pitch.

Develop yourself culturally

Join a truly international soccer programme which allows you to experience new cultures surrounded by like minded, soccer obsessed, students who share the same passion as you: football.

You'll get to travel the UK as we compete against other academies together with opportunities to play in Europe.

Give Yourself The Best Chance

Our soccer programme,  combined with the top class degree qualification you will earn from Richmond, The American University in London, will help you embark on a successful and rewarding career within the sporting industry. 

One programme, two degrees

Join the world’s only soccer programme that can offer you a highly recognisable dual accredited US/UK degree in International Sports Management.

Once graduated, you’ll be unbeatable. You’ll have studied one programme and gained two degrees, which will open the door to more international opportunities.

UEFA A & Pro Licensed Coaches 

The RIASA football programme offers you the chance to learn from experienced coaches who are at the top of their game. The RIASA coaching team combined, has over 100+ years experience within the football industry.

Our coaches are dedicated and highly qualified on and off the field, that’s why you'll receive more than just footballing advice when you join our programme.


The Original Soccer Programme.

RIASA was the first college soccer programme in the UK, offering student-athletes the chance of playing high intensity football whilst studying for a top-class degree.

Soccer Programme

Join an internationally renowned soccer academy that will help develop you on and off the field. Embark on a life changing journey and experience what it feels like to live, play and compete in a soccer obsessed environment. 

We’re not the average soccer academy, we work harder for you to make sure you leave our programme having had the best possible chance to showcase your abilities. Committing to RIASA could be one of the best decisions you'll ever make, it’s intense, it’s hard work but it’s also rewarding if you show the correct attitude and application. We've designed the programme to give you the best possible experience, which includes the following: 

  • UEFA A & Pro Licensed coaches
  • Play for 9 months of the season
  • Earn FA Level 1 Coaching Award
  • Professional standard academy
  • Train at least four times per week
  • Full gym membership
  • Objective led training structure
  • Learn the theory of the game
  • Match analysis sessions
  • Player progression monitoring
  • Showcase games
  • Play across Europe (tours & pro trials)
  • Play in China (Tours)
  • Culturally grow in new surroundings
  • Make friendships that last a lifetime
  • Live streaming & social media 
Earn your FA Level 1 Coaching badge

The FA Level 1 in Coaching Football, leading to the achievement of the 1st4sport Level 1 Award in Coaching Football qualification, is the first stepping-stone on the core coaching pathway. It will provide you with an introduction to coaching the game and working with players from under 7 to open age, you will undertake this module during your freshman year.

More than just soccer training. 

We provide the ultimate pro soccer experience, from training sessions, video analysis, regular team meetings, strength & conditioning sessions and much more.

We operate in the same way as any pro club, meaning we have high exceptions from you as players, however you'll reap the rewards of hard-work and dedication.

Customers served! 0 On average, we train 4 times per week for a minimum of two hours. That's over 150+ training sessions per season.
Customers served! 0  Compete in leagues, play friendlies & break into our showcase squad. Play between 20-30 games per season.
Customers served! 0 9-months of soccer development is roughly 250 days. You'll have the time needed to develop and grow on the pitch.

The RIASA Coaching Team

Meet the highly experienced coaching team at RIASA. Find out about their qualifications and football background. 

Gareth Prendergast
Head Academy Coach
Martin Hunter
Football Strategy & Mentoring Officer
Jamie McCombe
Academy Coach
Jack Salvatore
Academy Coach
Michal Korbel
Academy Goalkeeper Coach
Alex Gabriel
Academy Coach

RIASA Player Progression Pyramid 

It’s important to always have a plan when you're aspiring to break into the sporting industry and that’s where our undergraduate programme can help. We have a clear player progression pyramid that can help you achieve your maximum potential. 

The RIASA progression pyramid is a universal academy standard that we follow to make sure players are allowed to thrive and progress through our academy. At each level you will need to work hard as you feel the pressures of the modern English game. Your fellow student-athletes will be pushing themselves in training and trying to earn their selection place in match day squads.

Our UK football academy is competitive but rewarding. If you show good ability and prove yourself to our coaches, we will put opportunities in front of you.

Level 1 - U19 ECFA LEAGUE

Level 2 - RIASA REGIONAL TEAMS open age development leagues. If a player is older than 19 and doesn’t qualify for level 1 then he starts at level 2.

Level 3 - RIASA SHOWCASE TEAMS & loans to non league semi-professional teams including tournaments in China & Europe. All undergraduate players are invited to join the European tours.

Level 4 - Finnish league division 2 & 3 your pathway into pro soccer.

Level 5 - Other division 1 and premier league European teams. European Teams such as Finland, Sweden, Russia, Belgium, Norway, Denmark or a pathway back into the USL MLS or Asia or back to the U.K.

The RIASA coaches have over 100+ years of experience within the football industry. We have a mixture of many different traits amongst our coaching team, the main attributes being talent identification and player progression through coaching. 

All the way from the top down to the coaching team, we have great relationships and a strong network of connections across the English leagues, within Europe and in the US.  These connections allow us to put you in positions that can define your footballing career.

student living in leeds

Leeds is Vibrant & Youthful.

Leeds has a lot to offer students. It's a bustling city that has a thriving independent food scene, a vibrant creative community and a renowned retail destination. Watch the full tour below and fall in love with Leeds.

Academic Programme

In partnership with Richmond, The American University in London, the 4-year RIASA Undergraduate Programme is built around the core belief that student-athletes should not have to choose between academics or soccer. 

The academic and soccer programme come together to give you the best opportunity to succeed and with the university being the only one in the UK that can award two dual taught degrees, you're going to be unbeatable after you graduate as you look to further your career within the sporting industry.

The undergraduate degree we offer, BA in International Sports Management, is based on the American liberal arts tradition which helps broaden perspective and develops practical skills which are highly appealing to future employers in a global economy.

As a result, you’ll begin the programme with a combination of modules on business and sport, together with topics such as Creative Writing and Scientific Reasoning, to provide a broadened outlook. The second year has a financial focus on Accounting, Calculus, Probability and Statistics, together with a look at other subjects such as Sports Psychology.

The third and fourth years see a blend of diverse subjects, including Marketing, Nutrition, Legal and Ethical Concepts in Management, Sports Events Planning and Promotion and Sports Journalism. Along with a wide-ranging choice of electives in the final year, you’ll also have the option to do an integrated internship in Sports Management, extending your knowledge and expertise in a specialist area of your choice.

Year 1

  • Foundations of Business
  • Functions with Applications
  • Foundations of Computer Applications
  • Sport and Society
  • Tools for Change
  • Research and Writing I
  • Visual Thinking or Narratives of Change

Year 2

  • Managerial Accounting
  • Introduction to Microeconomics
  • Introduction to Macroeconomics
  • Introduction to Sports Business
  • Introduction to Sports Psychology
  • Probability & Statistics I
  • Social Change in Practice
  • Research and Writing II

Year 3

  • Corporate Finance
  • Principles of Marketing
  • Sports Economics
  • Sports Events Planning & Promotion
  • Sports Management
  • International Sports Governance
  • Research Methods and Data Analysis
  • Plus one of the following
  • Service Learning: Digital Collaboration
  • Service Learning: Leadership in a Changing World
  • Service Learning: Environment and Society
  • Service Learning: Global Citizenship and Migration

Year 4

  • Talent Identification: Principles & Practice
  • Sports Finance
  • Sports Marketing
  • Senior Project in ISM I
  • Senior Project in ISM II
  • Plus one of the following
  • Team & Leadership Dynamics
  • Coaching & Team Management
  • Integrated Internship
  • World Internship in Sport Management
  • Internship in Sport Management
More detail about the degree

Find more detailed information about the degree, including the Programme Specification Document, Course Specification Documents and other useful information about the University.

Transferable credits

Richmond, The American University in London accepts transferable credits. This means there is more opportunity for you to study with us here in Leeds, or take your studying to the US.

riasa away day

Training At Man City's Etihad Campus.

A select group of RIASA Academy Players had the chance to train at the Etihad Campus, the home of Manchester City’s first team training ground. Opportunities like this regularly happen during the season at RIASA.

Location & Facilities

 Our UK college soccer program is based 4 miles north-east of Leeds city centre, located in the grounds of Weetwood Hall Estate and Bodington Football Hub - which offers 'Premier League' standard sporting facilities. 

Weetwood Hall Estate

Weetwood Hall Estate is set within nine acres of beautiful woodlands and gardens, offering peace and tranquillity from the near-by hustle and bustle of Leeds student scene. On the estate you will find a breathtaking 17th Century Jacobean Manor House - this is the location of our academic delivery. 

Oxley Residence

Oxley Residence offers comfortable and modern all-inclusive student living. Located in Weetwood, just minutes from Weetwood Hall Estate and the student neighbourhood of Headingley, this private complex allows ease of living. You'll find more stunning architecture on the grounds of Oxley, plus it has a wide variety of on site facilities for students.

Bodington Football Hub

Bodington Football Hub is a brand-new state-of-the-art complex which offers Premier League standard facilities. The new development  includes three full size LED floodlit 3G Football Turf Pitches, a four-team changing pavilion with community café, meeting spaces, and a large accessible car park.

Premier League Standard 

Bodington Football Hub is the new home of RIASA. This recently developed complex costed in the region of £8.4m and received partial funding from The Premier League, The FA and Government’s Football Foundation. These bodies strive for the absolute best, we know that we are lucky to be able to develop in such a professional setting.

Student living in Leeds 

Leeds is one of the most diverse and exciting cities within the north of England. It’s vibrant and multicultural, offering a superb range of attractions, bars, restaurants and events across the city, which makes it the perfect choice for students.

Student living in Leeds

Leeds is one of the UK's most popular student cities outside of London. Every year, over 200,000 students enrol at one of the many universities the city has to offer.

Due to the great location of RIASA, just a short journey from Leeds city centre, you’ll get the best of both worlds that Leeds has to offer. That means you can enjoy the city lifestyle whilst enjoying moments of rural perfection as you train, study and focus on improving your game.

Train, Work hard, Repeat.

High Intensity Training.  

We train on average four times per week, for at least two hours. We also regularly have other sessions in place that help you develop further. Each session is taken seriously, with a clear objective so that you can put in to practice the theory behind the activity.

Entry Requirements 

You will need to meet the following entry requirements to join our soccer academy programme in Leeds. This includes your athletic assessment which can be done by attending RIASA ID camps or by video highlight upon application submission. 

International students 

UK & EU students

English language requirements (non-native English speakers)

  • IELTS 5.5 with 5.5 in each Listening, Speaking, Reading and Writing
  • TOEFL (IBT) 80+ overall with: Listening 17, Reading 18, Writing 17, Speaking 20
  • Overall Cambridge English Scale score of no less than 168 in Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking

Fees Breakdown

You can find a clear breakdown of the costs involved. Don’t forget that some students may be entitled to scholarships and there is a variety of funding options available for UK and International students.


Programme Cost

International Student

£32,150 p/a

UK Student

£27,750 p/a

When you join the RIASA soccer academy you will benefit from working alongside similar minded students who are sharing the same passion.  Here’s the full list of what's included for the RIASA Programme fee:

  • Full Nike RIASA Academy Kit
  • Full Nike RIASA match-day day kit
  • Play for 9 months of the year
  • Train on average 4 times per week
  • Compete on average 2 times per week
  • Earn a dual accredited US/UK degree
  • Comfortable accommodation
  • One cooked meal a day 
  • Supermarket food card 
  • Travel to all games
  • Modern professional facilities 
  • Highly experienced coaching team
  • Experience new cultures
  •  + So much more!

Funding Options for International Students

Funding is available for International students.  We recommend using the most widely known funding providers, you can also self fund the programme fee. Here are the funding options for you as a student thinking about joining our soccer academy.

FAFSA funding

There are four types of FAFSA direct Loans:

Direct Subsidised Loans: For independent and dependent undergraduate students – the interest is paid by the Federal Government while in school.

Direct Unsubsidised: For independent and dependent undergraduate students and graduate students – the interest accrues while in school.

Direct Parent PLUS: For parents of dependent undergraduates to cover up to the full cost of attendance minus any other aid – subject to the parent’s credit rating. The parent can ask to defer repayment during the beneficiary student’s in-school status and for an additional six months after the student’s graduation.

Direct Graduate PLUS: For independent graduate students to cover up to the full cost of attendance minus any other aid or funding – subject to the student’s credit rating and can be consolidated after graduation. Graduate PLUS loans begin repayment six months after graduation.

GI Billing - US Veterans & Dependants of Veterans

Richmond is registered with the US Department of Veterans Affairs (VA); therefore, if you are a veteran or veteran dependent student, you are qualified to apply for VA Benefits (The Post 9/11 GI Bill or DEA) to use toward your Richmond fees.

Students can also use Sallie Mae Loans for funding. You can also self fund the programme.

Funding Options for UK Students

Student Finance England

UK students who want to join the RIASA Undergraduate Programme can use Student Finance England, which is the main provider for student funding.  If you are a UK student you can get the maximum loan amount of £6,165.

You may also be entitled to a maintenance grant. This is calculated by household income and therefore we can’t confirm if or the amount you may be eligible for.

UK students can also use Future Finance to obtain loans. Alternatively you can self fund the fees for our programme.

RIASA scholarships 

UK students who choose to join the RIASA Undergraduate Programme are entitled to a £3,085 chancellor’s scholarship discount. Funding/academic loans are available to both UK & International students.

Been there, Done that. 

RIASA Success Stories. 

Find out how our programme has helped previous students achieve their ambitions. It’s more than just ‘playing football’ here at RIASA as we look to help you embark on a once in a lifetime opportunity that helps you grow, learn and succeed. 

The Route to Leeds

Follow these simple steps to apply to join the RIASA Undergraduate Programme. Take the leap towards a more rewarding future with a dual accredited US/UK BA Degree in International Sports Management and experience playing high intensity football at our soccer academy in Leeds.

Apply to RIASA

Hit the 'Apply Now' button to begin your journey to joining Richmond International Academic & Soccer Academy.

Connect With Us

You will receive an email from our recruitment team to confirm your application has been received.

RIASA ID Camp or YouTube Highlight video

We encourage you to book a place on our next RIASA ID Camp in the US, or attend our next UK event so we can access your playing ability. 

We will also accept your YouTube highlight video if you can’t wait for any of our upcoming ID camps.

Get Accepted by RIASA 

After the coaching staff have seen your talent, work ethic and potential, you will receive confirmation that you have been accepted by the soccer side of the programme. 

Apply to Academics

Once you have been accepted by RIASA, you will then need to apply to the University. We will provide you with everything you need to make sure your application goes through quickly.

It’s Time to Get Excited

Now that we have both applications, it’s time to start looking forward to joining our academy in Leeds. If there are any issues along the way, we are here to help.

Still got questions?

We’re here to help and we want to guide you through your application. If you have any questions, or you want to know more about our unique football academy, then please contact us for more information.  

RIASA Recruitment Team
Here for you 

We can answer any questions you have relating to our college soccer programmes. If you are interested in visiting the UK and wish to tour our venues, please get in touch. 


10 Reasons Why RIASA Should Be On Your College Soccer List.

Choosing where you’re going to spend 4 years of your life can be daunting, we know it’s a scary thought trying to understand which college soccer programme is best for you, that’s why we wanted to share with you the main benefits of joining RIASA.

Start Your UK College Soccer Journey.

Earn a dual accredited US/UK degree which will help you break into today's modern sporting industry. Train and compete for  9-months of the year in world-class sporting facilities. Your time is now!

  • Earn a dual accredited US/UK Degree
  • Play a 9-Month Soccer Season
  • Reach Your Potential in the UK