FAI recruit five ex-Republic of Ireland players as coaches

FAI recruit five ex-Republic of Ireland players as coaches

The Football Association of Ireland have enlisted five former Republic of Ireland players in their international coaching set-up.

Damien Duff, Kenny Cunningham, Mark Kinsella, Keith Andrews and Stephen McPhail will all link up with FAI High Performance Director Ruud Dokter to help with the coaching of the next generation of Irish footballers, through the Player Development Pathway.

The former players, who have a total of 265 senior caps between them, have recently been involved with the FAI Coach Education programme.

Duff earned 100 senior caps, Cunningham was a senior captain, Kinsella featured at the 2002 FIFA World Cup, Andrews played at the 2012 UEFA European Championships, and McPhail was part of youth squads in the late 1990s.

Ruud Dokter said: "We're delighted they will work with us. They bring great experience and to the game and to underage football, and in-turn, they will gain from the FAI as they continue to develop their own coaching careers..

"We have previously had arrangements like this with Mark Kinsella helping our Under 16 boys and Kenny Cunningham working with the Under 15 boys' side, so this commitment is something that we have been considering for some time.

"This is a very positive thing for Irish football and also Irish coaching because it allows current members of staff to learn from these experienced former players and vice versa. We look forward to having them contribute to our Player Development Pathway."

FAI CEO John Delaney was delighted saying: "The FAI has always sought to progress talent, whether that is our own coaching staff, or in this case to involve former players, who have played at the very top level.

"I look forward to watching them develop their own coaching talents as well as observing the development of the players who they will work with."

Duff will work with Colin O'Brien's U15 team, McPhail will be with Paul Osam's U16s, Andrews links up with the U17s, Cunningham will be in with Tom Mohan's U19s, and Kinsella will be part of Noel King's U21s.

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