Kerim Daricik is an Account Manager at St. George’s Park.
Here he explains how the EURO 2020 base camp was three years in the planning and how satisfying it is to see the team enjoying their time on site during the tournament.
Can you briefly explain your role and responsibilities at St. George's Park (SGP)?
As the Account Manager for the England Senior Team when on site at St. George’s Park, my role is to support and liaise with all of the various cross-site departments to ensure the needs and requirements of the team are met fully. In addition to the Senior Team, I also work with all other England National Teams, as well as England Football Learning, to make sure they’re set up for the season ahead and can run successful programmes and camps here at the National Football Centre.
Working so closely with our Teams and a wide variety of departments ensures SGP can meet it’s commercial objectives, whilst ensuring our operating partners own business objectives are supported by FA activity.
How has EURO 2020 impacted on your role in terms of preparing for the tournament?
I’m sure, like a lot of people, the biggest impact on my role was the tournament postponement from 2020 to 2021. Looking back, we started to pre-empt this would be the case, however, it still meant that a lot of the work that had already been completed such as the feasibility, financial impact and impact on other teams all had to be remodelled.
With the England Team on-site at SGP how has your day-to-day role changed in the short-term?
It’s very different to previous, pre-COVID years, that’s for sure. Normally at this stage of the season we’d be planning and preparing to host various preparation camps for a number of our development teams taking part in their respective tournaments. With the majority of these UEFA tournaments curtailed, and the rescheduling of the Women’s European Championship, it has meant that for the majority of this tournament the team have had the site to themselves.
That’s then provided an opportunity for me to connect with the wider FA Group and support with business and operational planning for the upcoming season. It’s been really been exciting to hear some of the things we’ve got planned for next season.
What does it mean to your personally to work in a position where you are playing a part in such a high-profile event?
It’s been fantastic to be able to play even just a small part. It’s crazy to think that the initial conversations with the Technical Team and some of the work around this base camp actually started way back in 2018, so it’s amazing to see those plans and the vision come to fruition.
Many people have put a lot of work into making sure SGP delivers a fantastic base camp for the team and the end result looks fantastic and the players and management seem very happy with their surroundings. Hopefully that translates to a successful tournament for the team on the pitch, so far so good!