Luke Theakston

Head of Academy Performance

  • Date Joined: 30th August 2016
Having worked at Ajax, Amsterdamsche (AFC), Portsmouth, Reading, SC Shanghai, Shanghai Jinshang and Újpest I am a highly experienced football professional in elite environments across various club academy, international youth and/or professional 1st teams. I am currently working as a Head of Academy Performance for Beijing Sinobo Guoan F.C. and an active member of the High Performance Group China.

I have obtained my BSc Sport Science degree (University of Surrey), an MSc Human Movement Science degree (Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam), a Diploma in Football Medicine (FIFA) as well as being a UEFA licensed football coach. Collectively, this provides a combination of high performance and coaching knowledge together to provide modern and scientific approach to maximise performance.

Additionally, I have experience with advanced technologies such as; Adidas MiCoach Performance Centre, GPS tracking (Catapult), Vicon/Biometric cameras, force plates, Smartspeed, Polar and many more.
Luke Theakston


  • : Football Medicine Diploma

    Football Medicine Diploma

  • League Managers Association: Football Management Course

    League Managers Association
    Football Management Course

  • : Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam - MSc Human Movement Science

    Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam - MSc Human Movement Science

  • UEFA: Certificate in Coaching Football

    Certificate in Coaching Football

  • : University of Surrey - BSc (hons) Sport Science

    University of Surrey - BSc (hons) Sport Science

  • The Football Association: Goalkeeping Level 2

    The Football Association
    Goalkeeping Level 2

Career History

  • SC Shanghai

    SC Shanghai
    Technical Director of Football
    2017 – 2018

  • Shanghai Jinshang

    Shanghai Jinshang
    Technical Director of Football
    2017 – 2017

  • AFC Amsterdamsche

    AFC Amsterdamsche
    Head Coach B (u17’s) and C (u15’s) Selection
    2016 – 2016

  • AFC Ajax

    AFC Ajax
    Sport Scientist
    2015 – 2016

  • AFC Amsterdamsche

    AFC Amsterdamsche
    Coach and Movement Specialist
    2014 – 2015

  • Pro Direct Soccer Academy

    Pro Direct Soccer Academy
    Head of Sport Science and Conditioning
    2014 – 2014

  • Ujpest FC

    Ujpest FC
    Academy Coach
    2013 – 2013

  • Portsmouth FC

    Portsmouth FC
    Football Coach and Goalkeeping Coach
    2010 – 2011

  • Reading FC

    Reading FC
    Academy (u18’s) Sport Scientist
    2009 – 2011

  • Coerver Coaching

    Coerver Coaching
    Football Coach and Goalkeeping Coach
    2009 – 2010

  • Beijing Sinobo Guoan F.C.

    Beijing Sinobo Guoan F.C.
    Head of Academy Performance
    2018 – Present

  • High Performance Group China

    High Performance Group China
    High Performance Member
    2017 – Present

Key Achievements

  • AFC Ajax - Leading the sport science in testing, monitoring and screening for the whole cohort of senior and academy players
  • AFC Amsterdamsche (AFC) - Coaching AFC u17’s to the Eredivise play-off final (players signed youth contracts at Feyenoord and Vitesse Arnhem among others)
  • Miscellaneous - Working in China, England, Hungary and The Netherlands with players capped by their country at senior level and/or at their retrospective age groups
  • Miscellaneous - Receiving academic awards for Recognised Excellence from the Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam and Award for Academic Excellence from the University of Surrey
  • Beijing Sinobo Guoan F.C. - Leading the sport science/performance department in the academy across the u8-u17 age range

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