Joachim Walltin is the General Secretary of FIFPRO Division Europe. Prior to taking up this role, the former professional football player was the president of Norwegian player association NISO for 10 years. Joachim has been on the EUA board since 2021.
What are you trying to achieve as a Board member of EU Athletes?
“I have a slightly different role than most of the other board members, as I am here representing FIFPRO as the GS of Division Europe. I am here to follow up on the cooperation between our respective organisations, which is important to protect the rights of football players and other athletes in Europe. With my background from NISO, the Norwegian multisport union, I am used to working with other sports and I still have a heart for all athletes and my approach is to create mutual benefits from such a collaboration.”
Why do you think cooperation between FIFPRO and EU Athletes is important?
“FIFPRO and EUA have a joint interest in several areas and for me as the General Secretary of FIFPRO Division Europe, it´s important that we build European alliances. I think we should align our work where possible and collaborate with the objective to strengthen both organisations. We have to continue promoting and protecting the athletes as workers and ensure their rights are being recognised and respected.”
In your view, what has been the most important achievement of EU Athletes during your time on the Board?
“I haven’t been too long in the Board, but I must say that what EUA has done together with the speed skaters in the ISU case is a very important job and achievement, which deserves a lot of recognition.”
What is in your opinion the biggest challenge that player associations are facing in 2022?
“From my experience, the player associations face quite different challenges, depending on the domestic conditions and recognition and work with other stakeholders. We see that way too few have managed to conclude Collective Bargaining Agreements and in some countries there is even a lack of Standard Employment Contracts, which should be mandatory to prevent problems and improve the professionalisation in all sports.”