Don't miss our weekly PhD newsletter | Sign up now Don't miss our weekly PhD newsletter | Sign up now

  Brentford Football Club and Cardiff Metropolitan University Fully-Funded PhD Studentship - Monitoring Psychological Load, Recovery and Wellbeing in Academy Football Players

   Cardiff School of Sport and Health Sciences

  Dr Ryland Morgans  Wednesday, July 17, 2024  Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)

About the Project

For a full description of this opportunity please see

The Opportunity

An exciting opportunity has arisen to undertake a fully funded applied PhD studentship in conjunction with Cardiff Metropolitan University and Brentford Football Club. The purpose of the role is to combine postgraduate research with the development of practitioner applied sports science skills through assisting in the delivery of the performance strategy at Brentford FC. In the role, the successful candidate will assist in providing sport science support to academy players within the club while collecting data to support a research project. The project will examine the psychological load, rest, recovery, health and wellbeing of elite academy football players and will be part of a bigger project that will also consider the physical development, performance and injury profile of academy players. The position will be based at Brentford Football Club for the duration of the studentship.

The studentship is offered for three years and provides tuition fees at the UK rate (£5,500) and an annual stipend of £19,500 per year. International students are welcome to apply for this position but should note that they will only receive a fee waiver at the UK rate (£5,500) and will be required to top-up the difference to cover international fees (£17,600)

Key responsibilities

As part of the performance team, and as a doctoral student, the key responsibilities of this role are:

  • To plan and complete a program of research suitable for a PhD related to the monitoring of psychological load and wellbeing in academy football players
  • Engage with a program of applied sport science related training associated with the development of relevant competencies for applied practice within elite football.
  • Assist in the delivery of the performance strategy, such as development and delivery of sport science support for players, the collection, management and analysis of data, and working within a multidisciplinary team . Attendance at selected games and training camps if and when required.
  • To fulfil the academic, professional, and personal requirements associated with the completion of tasks linked to doctoral level research and the role of a trainee practitioner in elite football.

The Candidate

The successful candidate will have a strong academic track record together with some experience of working in an applied performance setting. Academically, the successful applicant should have a strong background in sport science and medicine, sport psychology, or psychology and an interest in understanding physical and psychological load in sport, and the role of rest in load management. An aptitude for advanced quantitative and qualitative methods is also desirable. The candidate should also have practical experience of working in a sport science capacity within a high-performance environment and/or experience of working with young athletes. Experience of working in a football environment is desirable.

Education and Qualifications

  • A good honours degree (2:1 or above) in Sport and Exercise Science (with a Psychology bias), a relevant subject or Psychology (with Graduate Basis for Chartership [GBC}) is essential
  • A postgraduate qualification in a British Psychological Society (BPS) accredited MSc Sport (or soon to complete such a qualification) is also essential
  • There is an expectation that the candidate will be able to register, or work to a position to be able register for the BPS Qualification in Sport and Exercise Psychology (QSEP – Stage 2 training) or the British Association of Sport and Exercise Sciences (BASES) Sport and Exercise Psychology Accreditation Route (SEPAR) with a view to becoming a Registered Practitioner Psychologist with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC).


  • Sound knowledge and practical experience of providing sport science support in a high-performance sport environment is highly-desirable, preferably in football.
  • Experience of working in an academy setting or with young players or athletes is desirable.
  • Demonstrate activity related to accreditation within a professional body and ability to achieve accreditation with the British Psychological Society over the duration of the studentship is essential.

Personal Attributes

  • Engaging personality and proactive with the ability to adapt to fresh challenges.
  • Excellent communication skills, both written and verbal with the ability to manage time effectively and efficiently.
  • Good organisational and analytical skills.
  • Good team player and with the ability to work on own initiative. Flexible approach to working hours is a must.


Brentford Football Club is an equal opportunities employer and positively encourages applications from suitably qualified and eligible candidates. Regardless of sex, race, disability, age, sexual orientation, gender, reassignment, religion, or belief, marital status, or pregnancy and maternity.

To Apply

To apply for this opportunity, please submit the following:

1. A cover letter that is a maximum of one page in length. The cover letter should briefly detail your suitability for the studentship and outline your understanding, and expectations of the requirements needed for doctoral study.

2. A brief academic-practitioner CV of no more than two pages. The CV should also contain the name and contact details of two referees.

3. A brief research proposal of no more than two pages (excluding references). The proposal should build on the theme of PhD described above. We recommend using the following 5 subheadings:

  • Title, aims and purpose of the research;
  • Brief overview of the academic literature relevant to the field;
  • Proposed design/methods of studies;
  • The academic and applied contribution the proposed work would make to the field;
  • References.

Note – Any applicants invited to interview will be asked to submit copies of their degree certificates, transcripts and evidence of any other relevant qualifications in advance of the interview.

Given the anticipated high-volume of applications received, we will only contact those applicants who are invited to interview.

Applications should be submitted to

For any questions about this opportunity, please contact Dr Ryland Morgans at

The closing date for applications is midday on 17th July.

Psychology (31) Sport & Exercise Science (33)

Funding Notes

The studentship is offered for three years and provides tuition fees at the UK rate (£5,500) and an annual stipend of £19,500 per year. International students are welcome to apply for this position but should note that they will only receive a fee waiver at the UK rate (£5,500) and will be required to top-up the difference to cover international fees (£17,600).

Register your interest for this project