Alexandra Gómez Bruinewoud

Netherlands, Uruguay

Membership profile

Position: Attorney-at-law

Type of Occupation: In-house Lawyer

Area of expertise: Anti-Doping, Contractual / Commercial matters, Disciplinary Matters, Dispute Resolution, Governance / Regulatory work, Players’ Unions / Clubs’ Unions

Member of the month: October, 2021

We are delighted to announce our Member of the Month, Alexandra Gómez Bruinewoud.

Alexandra is Senior Legal Counsel at FIFPRO. She also is a FIFA Football Tribunal Dispute Resolution Chamber Judge and Co-director of the ISDE Online Global Masters Program in Sports Management. Profile here.

How did you get involved in sports law?

I always loved football as a fan, I was born and raised in Uruguay, where “football is what we breathe” as we say, and concidentally I got in contact wiht some football player. I even became good friends with some. This helped me understand their context, their life and their problems. I came to the Netherlands to do a Masters degree in Commercial Law, chose for the optional subject “Sports Law”, and there had a lecture on FIFPRO. I was immediately super interested, and I participated a lot in the lecutre. The professor, who was then the Legal Director at FIFPRO, told me that there was an opening at FIFPRO for a legal counsel position, and he thought I could fit with the profile. Long story short, I applied and got the job. And ever since (this was 2013), I have been happily working at FIFPRO Headquarters in the Netherlands. 

What was your most memorable achievement in the sector?

At FIFPRO we work as a team, so I can’t think of an own memorable achievement, but more as a team. The introduction of the Pregnancy and Maternity Regulations in the FIFA RSTP is definitively something recent we are extremely proud of. But every time we can help a player, we assist a union in the negotiation of a CBA, or in the drafting. ofa standard contract or in the creation of a National Dispute Resolution Chamber, it is a memorable moment to the team. That is what makes our job so nice, it is actually full of memorable moments. Of course, there are many drawbacks and frustrations too, as the situation of players around the world is very difficult, with lots of non and late payment, etc. 

And maybe more personal, the first time a gave a presentation or sat on a panel to a big audience – full of the usual white males – was very special to me. To realize that I made it. To see that start of the change, and that I was part of it, that I was one more person triggering it. To have not only witnessed but also been part of a great evolution in this regard (although we are still far from being in a diverse industry).

Any advice for someone trying to break in to the sector?

I would advise them to prepare themselves well and to dare. Dare to speak, dare to question, dare to share their thoughts, dare to recognize when they’ve made a mistake, and then dare to try again.

Greatest challenge you’ve had to overcome?

Having to prove double. I am 100% convinced that you need to prove double than men in order to get your space in this industry. It is far more difficult to get recognition, positions and respect.

How has WISLaw helped you in your career?

I think WISLaw has helped me better understand the gender gap in the sports industry, but showing me at the same time that it is still possible to build a successful career, and to help other women on the way. Also it has been very informational, it has provided me with the possibility to meet lots of very interesting women that work in the field. I use the database of the members to get ideas for speakers if we organize a congress or even for other positions.