A list of footballers who went to university for degrees

A list of footballers who went to university for degrees

Helix Odhiambo
updated at April 12, 2023 at 7:59 PM

Did you know that some players are academically bright? Most people still doubt whether footballers can obtain degrees. However, some players have proved that no human is limited. This article looks at some prominent footballers who went to university and what they studied.

Footballers who went to university for degrees
Photo: canva.com (modified by author)
Source: UGC

Do any footballers have degrees? Although studying while playing soccer appears a difficult task, some stars have managed to pursue both dreams.

Do you need to go to university to be a footballer?

No formal academic qualification is required to become a professional footballer. Most soccer stars even had to quit education to focus on the sport. But can footballers go to university?

Most educated footballers in the world

Why do football players have college degrees? Some footballers study to expand their knowledge while others prepare for life after retiring from soccer. So, which footballers have a degree? Here is our list of famous footballers that went to university.

10. Fikayo Tomori

The 23-year-old centre-back plays for Italian side AC Milan, on loan from Chelsea. Besides football, Tomori pursued a degree in Business Management with the Open University in 2019.

Fikayo Tomori profile summary

  • Full name: Oluwafikayomi Oluwadamilola Tomori
  • Date of birth: 19 December 1997
  • Place of birth: Calgary, Alberta, Canada
  • Nationality: English
  • Ethnicity: Nigerian
  • Age: 24 (as of March 2022)
  • Height: 1.85 m
  • Weight: 75kg
  • Profession: Footballer
  • Position: Centre-back
  • Current team: AC Milan
  • Degree: Business Management
  • University: Open University
  • Market value: $50 million

9. Romelu Lukaku

Professional footballers who went to university
Romelu Lukaku of Chelsea during the UEFA Champions League match against Lille at the Stade Pierre Mauroy on 16 March 2022 in Lille, France. Photo: Rico Brouwer
Source: Getty Images

Do any Premier League players have degrees? Chelsea's Romelu Lukaku and Juan Mata of Manchester United are among English Premier League players with degrees. Lukaku is known for his goalscoring exploits in England, Italy and Belgium. He holds a graduate degree in Public Relations. The Belgian also speaks fluent English, Spanish, Italian, Dutch, French and Congolese.

Romelu Lukaku profile summary

  • Full name: Romelu Menama Lukaku Bolingoli
  • Date of birth: 13 May 1993
  • Place of birth: Antwerp, Belgium
  • Age: 28 ( as of March 2022)
  • Nationality: Belgian
  • Height: 1.91m
  • Profession: Footballer
  • Position: Striker
  • Current team: Chelsea
  • Degree: Public Relations
  • Market value: $94.7 million

8. Simon Mignolet

The Belgian is widely known for his heroics as Liverpool's goalkeeper. Like Lukaku, Simon Mignolet is also fluent in five languages (German, Dutch, English, French and native Flemish). He holds a degree in Political Science and Law from the University of Leuven.

Simon Mignolet profile summary

  • Full name: Simon Luc Hilderbert Mignolet
  • Date of birth: 6 March 1988
  • Place of birth: Sint-Truiden, Belgium
  • Age: 34 ( as of March 2022)
  • Nationality: Belgian
  • Height: 1.93m
  • Weight: 87 kg
  • Profession: Footballer
  • Position: Goalkeeper
  • Current team: Club Brugge
  • Degree: Political Science and Law
  • University: University of Leuven
  • Market value: $7.2 million

7. Juan Mata

Do any Premier League players have degrees?
Midfielder maestro Juan Mata is one of the most educated footballers in the world. Photo: @juanmatagarcia
Source: Instagram

The Spanish midfielder has had a great football career in Spain and England. Mata has two bachelor's degrees from the Universidad Camilo Jose Cela in Madrid. One is in Sports Science and the other in Marketing.

Juan Mata profile summary

  • Full name: Juan Manuel Mata García
  • Date of birth: 28 April 1988
  • Place of birth: Burgos, Spain
  • Age: 33 ( as of March 2022)
  • Nationality: Spanish
  • Height: 1.7m
  • Weight: 63kg
  • Profession: Footballer
  • Position: Midfielder
  • Current team: Manchester United
  • Degrees: Sports Science, Marketing
  • University: Universidad Camilo Jose Cela
  • Market value: $3.3 million

6. Andres Iniesta

The former Barcelona magician is blessed with excellent skills, vision and creativity. Besides football, he holds two degrees, one in Biology and another in Sports Science.

Andres Iniesta profile summary

  • Full name: Andrés Iniesta Luján
  • Date of birth: 11 May 1984
  • Place of birth: Fuentealbilla, Spain
  • Age: 37 ( as of March 2022)
  • Nationality: Spanish
  • Height: 1.7m
  • Weight: 68kg
  • Profession: Footballer
  • Position: Midfielder
  • Current team: Vissel Kobe
  • Degrees: Biology, Sports Science
  • University: Ramon Llull University
  • Market value: $2.2million

5. Yuto Nagatomo

The Japanese defender spent seven years playing for Inter Milan before joining Galatasary. He currently plays for FC Tokyo. Nagatomo has a degree in Education in Economics from the University of Meiji. He is also the author of two books on modern economics.

Yuto Nagatomo profile summary

  • Full name: Yuto Nagatomo
  • Date of birth: 12 September 1986
  • Place of birth: Japan
  • Age: 35 ( as of March 2022)
  • Nationality: Japanese
  • Height: 1.7m
  • Weight: 68kg
  • Profession: Footballer
  • Position: Defender (Left-Back)
  • Current team: FC Tokyo
  • Degree: Education in Economics
  • University: University of Meiji
  • Market value: $782,000

4. Frank Lampard

English footballers with degrees
Everton manager Frank Lampard applauds the fans after the Emirates FA Cup Quarter Final match against Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park on 20 March 2022 in London, England. Photo: Craig Mercer
Source: Getty Images

Many people know Frank Lampard for his 13-year career at Chelsea. He is also among the English footballers with degrees. Lampard graduated with a degree in Latin from Brentwood school in Essex, where he scored an A grade.

Frank Lampard profile summary

  • Full name: Frank Lampard
  • Date of birth: 20 June 1978
  • Place of birth: Romford, London, England
  • Age: 43 ( as of March 2022)
  • Nationality: English
  • Height: 1.84m
  • Weight: 89.8kg
  • Profession: Football manager
  • Current team: Everton
  • Degree: Latin
  • University: Brentwood School
  • Net worth: $90 million

Who are the most educated players? Top 3

Manchester City defender Vincent Kompany and Juventus legend Giorgio Chiellini are the most educated footballers on our list.

3. Duncan Watmore

Can footballers go to university?
Middlesbrough's Duncan Watmore celebrates scoring against Luton Town during their Sky Bet Championship match at Riverside Stadium on 5 March 2022 in Middlesbrough, England. Photo: Alex Dodd
Source: Getty Images

Watmore has proved his talent on the pitch and his brighter side in education. He is a graduate with a first-class honours degree in Economics and Business Management from Newcastle University Business School.

Duncan Watmore profile summary

  • Full name: Duncan Watmore
  • Date of birth: 8 March 1994
  • Place of birth: England
  • Age: 28 ( as of March 2022)
  • Nationality: English
  • Height: 1.75m
  • Profession: Footballer
  • Current team: Middlesbrough
  • Degree: Economics and Business Management
  • University: Newcastle University Business School
  • Market value: $2 million

2. Vincent Kompany

Former Manchester City captain Vincent Kompany is also on the list of pro footballers who went to university. The Belgian graduated with a Masters of Business Administration (MBA) degree from Alliance Manchester Business School. In 2019, the University of Manchester awarded him with an honorary doctorate.

Vincent Kompany profile summary

  • Full name: Vincent Jean Mpoy Kompany
  • Date of Birth: 10 April 1986
  • Birth Place: Uccle, Belgium
  • Age: 35 ( as of March 2022)
  • Nationality: Belgian
  • Height: 1.93m
  • Weight: 85kg
  • Profession: Football manager
  • Current team: Anderlecht
  • Degree: Masters of Business Administration
  • University: Alliance Manchester Business School
  • Net worth: $45 million

1. Giorgio Chiellini

The Italian legend is one of the fiercest defenders in the world. Chiellini completed his graduation in Economics and Commerce from the University of Turin in 2010. He later acquired a Master's degree in the same course.

Vincent Kompany profile summary

  • Full name: Giorgio Chiellini
  • Date of Birth: 14 August 1984
  • Birth Place: Pisa, Italy
  • Age: 37 ( as of March 2022)
  • Nationality: Italian
  • Height: 1.87m
  • Weight: 85kg
  • Profession: Footballer
  • Current team: Juventus
  • Degree: Master's degree in Economics and Commerce
  • University: University of Turin
  • Market value: $1.7 million

Other footballers who went to university for degrees include Glenn Johnson, Edwin van der Sar, and Andrey Arshavin. Is this the new trend in football? Will we see more players enrol in universities?

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Is Neymar's transfer to PSG from Barcelona the most expensive globally? There is more on this and much more here!

Helix Odhiambo photo
Helix Odhiambo
Helix Odhiambo is an award-winning Kenyan journalist and content creator with over 6 years of experience. In 2016, he won the Goal Blaze Correspondent Award for young writers.