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April 2021


Why is there a lack of women working in men’s football? 

Rachel Davis has a BSc Degree in Sport and Exercise Therapy and an MSc in Physiotherapy from Leeds Beckett University. She started her career in non-league football working for Wakefield FC and Harrogate Railway FC before securing a position within the Leeds United FC Academy, working with the U9-U16.  

Working with a first team was always her ambition so in 2014 she applied and was successful for the first team physiotherapy role at Harrogate Town AFC, who were then in the National League North. Alongside working part time with Harrogate she worked as a Physiotherapist at Henshaws College, doing hydrotherapy and rebound therapy for students with cerebral palsy and other physical and learning disabilities.  

In 2017 Town turned full time and Rachel became Head Physiotherapist and Head of Medical for the club. Harrogate got promoted to the EFL in August 2020 during the COVID-19 Pandemic and becomes the only female Head Physiotherapist in the EFL.  

Sarah Murray

March 2021

Sarah Murray, Senior Psychologist, Brighton & Hove Albion FC

Bringing well-being into the performance picture

Sarah is currently women’s senior psychologist at Brighton and Hove Albion Football Club working with the first team in the WSL top tier. Having joined BHAFC in 2013 she was tasked with setting up performance psychology across the whole club, performance psychology is integrated fully from the bottom up and from the top down within both the women’s and men’s sections to ensure the mentality of players coming through is developed to positively impact on pitch performance during the season.

Sarah has also been a senior lecturer in Sport Psychology at the University of Chichester using her applied to experience to support the next generation of Sport Psychologists.

Sarah graduated from Brighton University with a degree in Sport Science and then completed a PGCE in PE teaching. After 8 years as a Physical Education teacher she decided to pursue her passion for the mental side of performance and completed an MSc in Sports Psychology at Brunel University, going on to gain BASES (British Association of Sport and Exercise Science) accreditation in 2012.

Before going full time in football she ran her own consultancy working with both individual athletes and teams including England cricket, various professional golfers, England Athletics AASE programmes, England Lacrosse, Football Referees Association and Sport Coach UK.

Sarah has many years coaching and playing experience in sport and has spent much time working with young athletes due to her teaching background. Her own sporting experience is extensive, having played national league Hockey and played at regional level in Cricket, Tennis and Football.


Sarah is interviewed by Dr Andrew Shafik, a junior doctor in London, BJSM reviewer and Editorial Board Member at FMPA’s publication ‘football medicine & performance’.

Links: – Culture drives well being and therefore performance (see podcast)
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February 2021

Dr Zaf Iqbal (Head of Medical – Crystal Palace FC), Dr Imtiaz Ahmad (Head of Medical – QPR FC), David Fevre (Fevre Consultancy, formerly Manchester United FC & Blackburn Rovers FC)

Chaired by Dr Andrew Shafik (Junior Doctor, BJSM Reviewer, Editorial Board Member at FMPA)

Who has the last word?

Manager, Doctor, Physio, Performance Manager, Nutritionist, Player. Nowadays, all are involved in the maintenance and tuning of a high performance athletic machine. But who has priority in decision making? And who should? Have decision making structures been updated to take account of the new realities of dealing with elite sportsmen and women in football?

180627 Ola Toivonen, goalkeeper coach Maths Elfvendal, head coach Janne Andersson and performance Manager Paul Balsom of Sweden celebrates after the FIFA World Cup WM Weltmeisterschaft Fussball group stage match between Mexico and Sweden on June 27, 2018 in Ekaterinburg. Photo: Petter Arvidson / BILDBYRAN / kod PA / 87737 *** 180627 Ola Toivonen goalkeeper coach Maths Elfvendal head coach Janne Andersson and performance manager Paul Balsom of Sweden celebrates after the FIFA World Cup group stage match between Mexico and Sweden on June 27, 2018 in Ekaterinburg Photo Petter Arvidson BILDBYRAN Code PA 87737 PUBLICATIONxNOTxINxDENxNORxSWExFINxAUT.

January 2021

Dr Paul Balsom, Sports Scientist & UEFA Pro-qualifed Coach, Leicester City FC

The importance of performance analyst within the MDT and the role and application of AI.

Dr Paul Balsom is a sports scientist and UEFA pro-qualified coach, with over 20 years of international experience at the highest level of FIFA and UEFA football match activities. He has been a member of the backroom staff at Leicester City since 2008 and King Power owned club OH Leuven in Belgium since 2017. He is also Performance Manager for the Swedish National Men’s team. Paul is Head of the UEFA Fitness for Football Advisory Group and has a special interest in how technology and data can be used to enhance performance

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December 2020



Karen Carney is a retired footballer and ex-Olympian who played for Birmingham City/Arsenal/Chicago Red Stars/Chelsea/ over 100 caps for England and Team GB. Karen is a current commentator and pundit at the BBC and BT Sport where she provides expert analysis on various games. She is highly skilled in Sports Science and Sports Psychology and has an MSc focussed in Performance Psychology. She is also a Consultant to VISA helping develop the Second Half Programme. To top it all off, Karen received an MBE in 2017 for her services to football.

Will Abbott

November 2020

Dr Will Abbott, Academy Performance Manager at Brighton & Hove Albion Football Club.

The benefits and challenges of conducting research within professional sport and how to feed back scientific investigations.

Will is the Academy Performance Manager at Brighton & Hove Albion Football Club having previously gained experience working as a strength & conditioning and sport science practitioner at the club. Will’s current role is to lead a team of S&C, sport science, nutrition and medical practitioners towards achieving a common objective. He also has a PhD in the monitoring and prescription of GPS training load in elite academy soccer athletes.

Dr Abbott is interviewed by Dr Andrew Shafik, a junior doctor in London, BJSM reviewer and Editorial Board Member at FMPA’s publication ‘football medicine & performance’.

jonny gordon

October 2020



Jonny is as an Emergency Medicine Consultant in Glasgow and is the first team doctor to the men’s Scotland national football squad. He has also been the first team doctor at Celtic FC and was the Deputy Chief Medical Officer at the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games. In 2007 Jonny founded the company SportPromote to provide education and equipment to health care professionals involved with emergency situations in sport. The course proved to be exceptionally popular and in 2012 he was selected by the UEFA Medical Committee to be Course Director for the first Football Doctor Education Programme Workshop run in Vienna. Jonny remains as a consultant to UEFA on emergency medicine matters and has also published 2 books on Sports Medicine. 


Tahith Chong of Manchester United checked for concussion during the UEFA Europa League match at Old Trafford, Manchester. Picture date: 27th February 2020. Picture credit should read: Darren Staples/Sportimage via PA Images

September 2020


Human factors in high performance football and concussion recognition in major tournaments

Dr Jonathan Hanson is a Sports Medicine Consultant with a background in emergency medicine. He worked as an emergency care advisor to the FA and worked on head injury systems and immediate care to the Mens team at the 2018 FIFA World Cup. Jonathan wrote the FA Area course which preceded the current ATMIF course.Jonathan is currently team doctor at Glasgow Warriors Rugby and has extensive experience of working at the Beijing olympics and with the Scottish Rugby Union.

Jonathan is interviewed by Dr Andrew Shafik, Foundation Year 2 Doctor, Northern Deanery, BJSM reviewer and Editorial Board Member at FMPA’s publication ‘football medicine & performance”.

05 September 2020, Switzerland, Basel: Soccer: National team, Germany, final training in the St. Jakob-Park stadium, fitness coach Nicklas Dietrich (r) and players during warm-up. Photo: Christian Charisius/dpa

July 2020

Dr Liam Anderson, Head of Sports Science & Medicine, Crewe Alexandra FC

Keeping non-starting players fit in professional football

Interviewed by Dr Andrew Shafik, Foundation Year 2 Doctor, Northern Deanery, BJSM reviewer and Editorial Board Member at FMPA’s publication ‘football medicine & performance”.

Useful links

PICTURE POSED BY MODEL File photo dated 09/03/15 of a woman showing signs of depression. Almost a quarter of adults living under the coronavirus lockdown in the UK have felt lonely - raising concerns about the long-term risk to mental health.

June 2020

Dr Vincent Gouttebarge, Chief Medical Officer at Fifpro

Mental health of players during ‘return to football’

Interviewed by Dr Andrew Shafik, Foundation Year 2 Doctor, Northern Deanery, BJSM reviewer and Editorial Board Member at FMPA’s publication ‘football medicine & performance’

We have added some useful links to support this podcast:


March 2020

FMPA CEO, Eamonn Salmon, talks to Clinical Sports Psychotherapist Gary Bloom about the role of the Clinical Sports Psychotherapist, his work at Oxford United and the upturn in referrals.

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April 2019

The Football Medicine & Performance (FMPA) CEO, Eamonn Salmon, talks about the history of the FMPA with Mike Clegg.

From inception to the present day we hear from Eamonn on why the FMPA was set up for all medicine and performance disciplines within professional football, what the purpose is and what the aims are.

Eamonn reveals the struggles in setting up the association and the many achievements and successes to date.