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Club News


17 September 2020

An exciting opportunity has arisen to work at Barnsley Football Club.

Position: Player Care/Academy Psychologist
Site: Barnsley Football Club
Reporting to: Operations Manager / Head of Education
Responsible for: Implementing the Club’s Player & Care Framework

Purpose: The Player Care/Academy Psychologist will take responsibility for maintaining and improving ‘player’ care provision including mental and emotional well-being, and piece together a player care framework that supports collective and individualised approaches to player care. Player care planning will supplement the football education programme and ensure that consideration around care provision is embedded into all practices. The Player Care & Academy Psychologist will work within multi-disciplinary environments and shape and influence procedures that supports the holistic development of the player.

Key Areas of Responsibilities

  1. To deliver the club Life-skills programme for players across the respective development phases.

  2. Liaise with HR and academy administration and create wider induction processes with emphasis on care, health and well-being for incoming players across the respective development phases (catering for individual and specific needs).

  3. Create engagement strategies and practices for academy-aged players and parents so as to offer support systems for player development purposes.

  4. Lead on the Club’s Mental Health Award in Sport liaising with Leeds Beckett University.

  5. Using this award, to increase capacity in both leadership and management in supporting care, health and well-being provision across the academy (and Club).

  6. Lead on progression and exit strategies for exiting players within a multidisciplinary approach.

  7. Work with Head of Education to Influence CPD training to safely support the mental and emotional well-being of all its members through the training of its staff and provision of activities and support for its players.

  8. Work with Head of Education to Increase awareness in and around the protection of the player's right to equality, diversity, and inclusion through supporting (and influencing) review periods and developing confidentiality confidence routes to raised concerns.

  9. Develop preparation and life-skill training programmes that enhances players’ self-sufficiency and independence in dealing with the specific pressures of participating in an elite sporting environment.

  10. To Maintain the Player care/Psychology aspect on the Academy audit tool kit, when required to do so.

  11. Oversee all psychological support to Youth Development Phase Academy players, parents and coaches.

  12. To liaise weekly with fellow Academy Psychologist and to liaise with all staff as an when required to do so.

  13. To ensure all written evidence is up to date as per EPPP requirements.

  14. To maintain an up to date CPD portfolio.

  15. Ensure best practice is always followed and players are receiving optimal advice at all times.

  16. To maintain a professional attitude and appearance always.

  17. To assist and lead departmental in-service training as and when required.

  18. To assist in other departmental duties as required.

Host Families

  1. To take responsibility to create and maintain a Care and Accommodation Plan that complies with League rules relating to ‘host families’.

  2. Create an induction process relating to host families’ provision (and activities) that improves clarity around the role, its legal status and appropriateness in supporting the development of the player.


  1. Honours degree in Sport Psychology or related discipline (Essential).

  2. Master’s degree in Sport Psychology or related discipline (Desirable).

  3. Accredited Sport and Exercise Scientist (Psychology) with Chartered Scientist (CSci)

    status through the British Association of Sport and Exercise Sciences (BASES), or ability to attain this within an agreed timeframe.


Support the work of the Head of Education and Designated Safeguarding Officer including contributing to risk assessments and wider safeguarding including health & safety matters.

Support the ‘Player and Parent Voice’ voice initiative that increases and widens safeguarding consultation providing inclusive opportunities for collaboration.

Liaise with football authorities i.e. English Football League and FA pertaining to all matters relating to player care and welfare.

Supporting the Education and Welfare Officer with safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children.

Support the Club’s response to audits, inspections and assessments relevant to its academy category status.

Person Specification

(i) A minimum of 3 years’ experience in a care and welfare environment ideally with an elite sport.

(ii) Previous experience working within policy, planning and implementation that seeks to develop individuals and groups of individuals.

(iii) A complete understanding of care and welfare frameworks and other cross-cutting agendas that impact on player/individual care and welfare.

(iv) A full understanding and knowledge of reporting processes relating to child protection matters, the use of statutory agencies and authorities that help regulate activities.

(v) Knowledge and understanding of the relevant Acts that impact on elite football and respective agendas for safeguarding children and young people and the role of the Local Authority relevant to the protection of children and young people (i.e. safeguarding boards).

(vi) Possess excellent verbal and written skills in addition to enhanced interpersonal and reporting skills relevant to proven successes in professional matters.

(vii) An excellent communicator that is able to use a number of communicative platforms to communicate confidential material to selected audiences.

(viii) Experience of data management systems, ensuring compliance with GDPR Legislation and Regulation and data protection law ensuring confidentiality and discretion within sensitive settings.


How to Apply

2.1 Please send an updated CV to: to include qualifications, experience and employment history (with 2 references with one reference from your most recent employment). Separately, please attach 1 x A4 page outlining your suitability for the role (please refer to job description).

2.2 Due to the volume of applications, it may not be possible to provide a response to the outcome of your application i.e. short-listing of candidates.

2.3 Closing date for applications: 11th October 2020 2.4 Interview dates: 12th – 16th October 2020
2.5 Salary: £12K
2.6 Post: 0.5 FTE (Approx.19 hours per week)

2.7 Work Programme: to be established by player scheduling and Head of Education.


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