The Premier League Bioengineer

James Kenealey

by James Kenealey on

Over the last few months we’ve been looking at all things construction in the world of Premier League football. We’ve seen the good, the clever, the unfinished and the downright botched, and we’ve seen how stadiums can make or break club fortunes. This week, we take a look at the playing side of the game, and what one professional footballer has been quietly doing in the world of bio-engineering.

Teddy Boy

One thing that is certain for any player from any club is that football is a relatively short career. If you make your first professional league appearance at aged 16 (which is currently the youngest debut age in English football) you can look forward to, at best, about a 20-year career. Teddy Sheringham, who played for a multitude of clubs including Millwall, Tottenham, Manchester United and West Ham, played his last professional game for then-Championship side Colchester United in 2008 at the age of 42, an impressive 26 years after his debut. He remains the benchmark for extreme longevity that will be difficult to surpass.

But what do footballers do after their careers are over? The average wage for a Premier League footballer in the modern day is £2.6million/year, the highest being ten times that figure with Manchester United’s new Chilean pianist Alexis Sanchez scooping a cool £500,000 per week. Suffice to say that money should never really be an issue in the retirement years for anyone who’s had even a vague career at the highest level. Plus, there’s always the enticing career of professional punditry to keep the money rolling in, where apparently you don’t even need to be competent or be able to speak properly to land a position.


In 2004, hot on the heels of their last Premier League title win to date, Arsenal signed a young Frenchman by the name of Mathieu Flamini from Marseilles, probably hoping his name would join Viera, Pires and Henry among the list of Arsenal’s dominant Frenchmen from the Wenger era.

Described as a “combative, energetic and tenacious” midfielder by Arsène, Flamini nevertheless failed to make much of an impact in his first couple of seasons with the North London club, starting only 9 games and cementing himself as a utility player. That was until 2007/08 where he seemed to improve dramatically and become a more favoured player in his midfield role.

In 2008, Flamini left Arsenal for AC Milan, where he spent five years, playing nearly 100 league games. When he was released in 2013, he re-signed for Arsenal, became an impressive part of the side again and was an unused substitute in both the Gunners’ drought-ending F.A Cup final victories (2014 and 2015).

Levulinic Acid

Around the time he signed for AC Milan, Mathieu already had one eye on his future outside of professional sport when he co-founded – largely in secret – GFBiochemicals with Pasquale Granata. Headquartered in the Netherlands, the company produces levulinic acid, which is created from biomass like grass. This chemical can be used as a substitute for oil in plastics, fuels, solvents and across the pharmaceutical industry. It’s been hallmarked as a chemical that could unlock a greener world.

Climate change has something that has been close to the Frenchman’s heart for some time and in 2008 he met business partner Pasquale Granata. One meeting with some scientists later, and the company was on its way. As Flamini was plying his trade for AC Milan, the company worked extensively with the University of Pisa perfecting the acid behind the scenes.

The company now employees some 80 people, and during this financial year, they want to scale production up to 10,000 metric tonnes per year. Funded by private investors, the company aims to become a leading bio-engineering company and help leave a lasting mark on the bio-economy.

Subscribe to the Blog

If you enjoy our content, fill out the form below and you will be kept up to date with our latest blogs!

Cx Jobs

Maintenance Engineer

Morson Talent are currently recruiting for a Maintenance Engineer on an initial 12 months FTC basis (Likely to be perm for the right candidate) in the Manchester area. Location Manchester Salary £37,000 + 20% uplift for occasional shift work Hours Days based - Occasional cover shift work (6-2 / 2-10) The Person: * NVQ 3 or above in Engineering ESSENTIAL * Multiskilled - Mechanically / Electrically biased * Various backgrounds considered: Manufacturing, Automotive, Food, Distribution Centres, Automated Warehouse, Recycling, Biomass, Packaging or Printing, Chemical Plant, Brewery, Paper, Manufacturing Plant, Electromechanical / Automated Plant. * Health and safety focused, good awareness and a can do attitude. Desirable: * Bottling, material handling, AGV's, stackers, palletisers * Pneumatics, hydraulics The Job: * Assist with breakdowns maintenance and reliability of electromechanical machinery, equipment, and plant. * Maintenance of various sections of the plant - PPM and fault finding * Monitor production process & machinery performance. * Assist with PPM & breakdown. * Continuous improvement If you are interested in a new opportunity and would like to discuss further, please do not hesitate to contact me directly on 07739311930 or reply with an updated CV.

System Engineer

A Systems Engineer contractor is sought for a contract in Stevenage, Hertfordshire for a SATELLITE DIGITAL PROCESSOR SYSTEM ENGINEER position.Our client seek an expert in digital signal processor design and validation to join the design team responsible for the secure telecommand and telemetry system for a military communication satellite.The role requires an all-round grasp of the digital system, which includes both cryptographic and modem equipment, and its hardware implementation in order to support both system analyses and commissioning of prototype hardware. KEY SKILLS / PROVEN ABILITYProven Ability in any or all of the following topics will be valuable -Failure mode and related system analyses: FMEA / FMECA, single event effects and security analysis;Cryptographic processing and associated security functions;Modem functions (modulation and coding);Implementation of reliable digital signal processing hardware;FPGA-based prototyping and debugging;End-to-end RF communication systems testingSector knowledge: Space / Aerospace / Defence / Communications ADDITIONALTravel - Occasional travel to other UK sitesBase of Work - Following a familiarisation period on site this role will be working from home then working on site once COVID restrictions are lifted by the client - candidates must be able to work on site full time when required

Composite Technician - Aerospace Panels

Morson are currently looking for experienced composite technicians for our client for roles based in Stevenage.Job Profile Assembly and final assembly of sandwich aluminium composite panel production. Inclusive of: - Potting of inserts Bonding of various brackets and equipment Film adhesives Panel completion General hot and cold bonding processes Drilling, reaming etc. High tolerance requirements (typically better than 0.05mm in various areas). Experience Essential:- Ability to work from detailed drawings and electronic work instructions - within specific procedures Experience working to procedures with checkpoints/quality gates Previous experience such as mechanical fitter, close tolerance sheet metal worker, time served mechanical technician Experience in industries such as Space/Aerospace/Automotive/Motorsport etc. Ability to work in confined spaces above floor level Desirable:- Knowledge of satellite structure assemblies or similar Modern apprenticeship Clean room experience Shifts Weekly rotating double day shifts - 06:00hrs to 14:00 hrs 14:00 hrs to 22:00 hrs Some weekend working Saturday or Sunday may be required at peak times. Other There will be a skills test at interview The successful candidate will be required to pass BPSS security clearance before confirmation of contract offer. Free parking is provided for this role in a municipal car park located approximately fifteen minutes' walk from site.

Warehouse Operative

Warehouse operative Principal Responsibilities Health and safety: Must ensure that safe working practices as stipulated by the company are adhered to at all times. Undertake any relevant HSE training as required. Picking: Accurately collect parts from various locations within the warehouse without introducing errors. Packing: To consolidate picked goods in a secure manner for direct shipment to external/internal customers. 100% double check on picked items to achieve very high accuracy levels. Dispatch: Consolidate packages on the relevant pallet and prepare for collection, i.e. pallet wrapping / loading into carrier cages. Goods Inwards: Check deliveries for damage and check against the delivery note to ensure that we have received the correct quantities of the correct products. Using Rf scanners Communication: On a day-to-day basis communication between various departments is normal. Responsibility for dealing with day-to-day enquiries in a friendly yet professional manner applies to all logistics staff. Operation of a Powered industrial truck is desirable if operator holds licence and is authorised. Other key links & experience areas Customer Services Manufacturing/Goods In Carriers/Couriers ISC Office Please note that these roles are currently part time hours from 4pm - 8pm.

Skills and qualifications needed for a career in cyber security