Revolution and The GFA: Could The Alliance Prove Fruitful?


The New England Revolution weren’t exactly announced as being a part of the Global Football Alliance, but they seem to have been one of the first 10 teams. In September 2020, the GFA started posting about the team and their wins toward the end of the 2020 season. In February 2021, the twitter persona Revolution Report retweeted GFA’s graphic for a newly added Spanish team, Villarreal CF. The bottom of the graphic included the New England Revolution’s logo, although the team had not announced it.

Revolution Report on Twitter noting the Revolution’s part in the Global Football Alliance

It wasn’t until October that the team twitter account actually acknowledged the connection. Club President Brian Billello and the Kraft Family met with AS Saint Etienne’s president Bernard Caiazzo. The Global Football Alliance tweeted about the exchange.

Global Football Alliance tweeting about a meeting of the minds between Bilello and AS Saint Etienne’s Bernard Caiazzo

In the process of trying to get Brian Bilello for an interview about the connection. That will be a post for another time.

The Global Football Alliance’s logo

The Teams, Their Countries And The Importance Of The GFA

The GFA has added teams since I started this piece, now amassing to a total of 20 teams. Each team is from a different country.

  1. AS Saint Etienne – France
  2. Chapecoense – Brazil
  3. Villareal CF – Spain
  4. Kawasaki Frontale – Japan
  5. Estudiantes De La Plata – Argentina
  6. Crystal Palace – England
  7. FK Bodø/Glimt – Norway
  8. DIM – Columbia
  9. Melbourne Victory – Australia
  10. Wolfsburg – Germany
  11. FK Krasnodar – Russia
  12. Deportivo Toluca FC – Mexico
  13. Wadi Degla SC – Egypt
  14. Paradou Athletic Club – Algeria
  15. AZ Alkmaar – Netherlands
  16. AEK – Greece
  17. Standard Liege – Belgium
  18. Club Cienciano – Peru
  19. Jamshedpur FC – India
  20. New England Revolution – USA

I don’t know about you, but looking at that list makes me smile. The reasoning for the existence of the Alliance is that they’re non-rival strategic partners. So, first and foremost, the separate countries of each team is extremely important. The teams won’t end up having to deal with non-compete issues until the International level. There are 20 countries represented in this alliance and quite a few of them produce top talents across the world.

The Goal Of Coming Together

The Global Football Alliance is meant to create a synergy for all clubs involved. In the end, this means that the GFA is aiming to provide a place to share innovative ideas. The Alliance’s goal is to include at least 25 teams from 25 countries. The hope is to provide a collaborative end result of similar level for all clubs. The things they plan to share are as follows:

  • Comparing Best Practices
  • Establishing A Scouting Network
  • Optimizing Training And Medical Skills
  • Support For Member Clubs
  • Innovation Digitally For All Clubs

The way that the clubs will be sharing these innovations and practices is through a few avenues. They have a live chat platform open 24/7 for all clubs involved. On top of the constant communication, they plan to have webinars and digital conferences twice a month. In those meetings, they plan to have football experts. Alongside those, there will be a monthly meeting of the minds of each club to discuss various themes of running a football club. To top it all off, the Alliance hopes to have a quarterly conference hosted by one of the clubs. Including, but not limited to, stadium visits, key issues and the challenges that the host club deals with on yearly basis.

Will The Global Football Alliance Help The Revs?

Learning from global brands like Villareal CF, VfL Wolfsburg, ASSE, and Crystal Palace will absolutely benefit the Revolution. The best practices in medical training and physical training will also pay dividends for a club like the Revs. There have been multiple avenues of training knowledge that have come through the team and made the team better. One that comes to mind is Anton McElhone who came from Tottenham in 2017.

The obvious benefit will come from a scouting network branching throughout each continent. I’ve been reading Paul Mariner’s autobiography “My Rock and Roll Football Story”. One story that stuck out to me, was that Steve Nicol and Paul Mariner went to Argentina with 20 names. “And the best talent, we saw there was Sting with the Police in Buenos Aires.”, Steve Nicol wrote down for the book. The stronger and more knowledgeable scouting team that we have at the Revs, the better the team can get every year going forward.

A big shout out to Willy Whitelaw and how he’s transformed the New England Revolution social media game. The digital aspect of this alliance should also be able to help further what Whitelaw already has done. A teaming up with the minds of clubs that have double, triple and even quadruple the reach that the Revs have will be amazing.

In my next few posts on here, I will be breaking down each club and what they can bring to the table. Lookout for Global Football Alliance Scouting Trip: Europe next.

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