Mark Kennedy lays out Lincoln City intentions

The ex-Ireland winger has been appointed as manager Lincoln City, the League One outfit that tried and failed to lure his compatriot Stephen Bradley away from Shamrock Rovers as boss
Mark Kennedy lays out Lincoln City intentions

Mark Kennedy, who Lincoln have appointed as their new head coach on a four-year contract. Nick Potts/PA Wire.

Mark Kennedy insists completing his coaching apprenticeship has equipped him to finally take over a senior club on the rise.

The ex-Ireland winger has been appointed as manager Lincoln City, the League One outfit that tried and failed to lure his compatriot Stephen Bradley away from Shamrock Rovers as boss.

Apart from an ill-fated seven-month spell at doomed Macclesfield before they were wound up in the High Court, the 45-year-old’s coaching experience has been in the background.

Like former Ireland teammate Lee Carsley, now England’s U21 manager, Kennedy cut his teeth at Manchester City's academy, spending four years tutoring some of the world’s finest talent.

The Dubliner – who in 1995 became the most expensive teenager in British football history when snapped up by Liverpool from Millwall for an initial £1.5m – also had stints at Wolves and Ipswich Town before his most recent post at Championship outfit Birmingham City, operating as Lee Bowyer’s assistant.

Now he’s been entrusted with reviving Lincoln’s fortunes. Ambitions to at least replicate their previous season’s run to the League One play-off final fell asunder by finishing 17th, leading to the exit of Michael Appleton from the hotseat.

"From a coaching perspective my time working in those elite Academies has had a huge influence on how I see the game today," the 34-times capped Kennedy told BBC Radio.

"I knew it would take some time to get to where I wanted to get.

"What I wanted to do more than anything was make sure that when I got the right opportunity at the right club, that not only would I be prepared but I wanted to repay the faith in the board and fans, in particular.

"I also wanted to make sure they were getting someone who is ready to give them something they want to see."

As for his style, Kennedy intends to excite the Sincil Bank faithful. With players such as 23-year-old Irishman Anthony Scully, who bagged 15 goals last season, in his ranks, defending from the front will be stated approach from the outset.

"By being attractive, having a brand that people can identify with, that to me will bring success," he said of his policy.

"A big part of my DNA, and how I see the game, is to be a really aggressive and high-pressing team.

"There has to be a purpose to playing football and a purpose to possession - we don't want centre-halves that have 300 passes between them.

"We want to play an attractive brand of football that is possession based, but it has to be aggressive and it has to be progressive. That is something I want to bring to Lincoln.

"It's hugely important that we get fans off their seats."

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