Newly-appointed Clare football coach Paudie Kissane is relishing the challenge, but insists it was not a case of choosing between playing for Cork and coaching the Banner.
Kissane’s addition to new Clare manager Colm Collins’ backroom team was revealed on Wednesday, just over a week after he announced he was hanging up his boots at inter-county level. While Collins had been in contact before his retirement, the move was not a done deal until this week.
“Colm contacted me a few weeks ago asking if I’d be interested in getting involved,” Kissane said.
“It was never a case of it being a situation that I was giving up Cork to go and coach Clare, but after I retired I discussed it a bit more with him and we came to an agreement earlier this week. It’s a new step and one that I’m delighted to be taking. Colm has a three-year term I think so we’ll see how we go with it, I’m looking forward to getting started.”
Kissane has a degree in sports science and is currently undertaking a Master’s degree in a distance course with St Mary’s University in London. He works with athletes on a one-to-one basis and offers workshops at clubs, so he feels that there is a wealth of knowledge he can offer.
“My main role will be in coaching the team,” he said, “but there will be a lot of other areas too.
“Obviously, I have a big interest in sports science, having an educational background in that. There’ll be work involved in planning sessions, with a different focus on different things depending on the time of year. Things like speed work and aerobic fitness are areas I can give input, but coaching will be the main thing.”
Kissane, a county Premier IFC winner with Clyda Rovers last month, has had some involvement with other clubs in Cork, though he admits taking on a role at inter-county level will provide a new horizon.
“With my involvement with Cork, it was obviously very hard from that point of view to give a lot of time to coaching,” he said.
“I helped out with Lyre this year and they won the Duhallow championship for only the second time. I did a bit of work in West Cork with Argideen Rangers too and then when I was a full-time coach with the county board I’d have been involved with the development squads.
“At the moment I provide current best practice in sports science and athlete development to assist them to be the best they can and I learned a lot from my time with Cork too, but there’s no point pretending that this isn’t a big jump. I didn’t envisage a month or two ago that I’d be the Clare coach but it’s a great opportunity.
“I’d hope that in a year or two I can look back and say that I helped them to improve.”
© Irish Examiner Ltd. All rights reserved