Wednesday, May 22, 2024

FAI confirm John O’Shea return as Republic of Ireland interim head coach

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JOHN O’SHEA has been confirmed as Ireland interim boss for the June friendlies against Hungary and Portugal.

FAI Director of Football Marc Canham had voiced his desire for O’Shea to take charge of the men’s senior team in a caretaker basis again last week.


John O’Shea is back as Ireland interim head coach
He was in charge for the March friendlies against Belgium and Switzerland


He was in charge for the March friendlies against Belgium and Switzerland

That followed the Association’s failure to find a full-time successor to Stephen Kenny five months after they decided to dispense with his services.

O’Shea has not been interviewed or considered for a permanent appointment but will again step into the breach.

Coaches Paddy McCarthy, Glenn Whelan and goalkeeping coach Rene Gilmartin, analyst Stephen Rice and athletic performance coach Damien Doyle will again assist him but Brian Kerr – who was a technical consultant for the March games against Belgium and Switzerland – will not be involved.

In an FAI statement, O’Shea said: “I’m looking forward to continuing as Interim Head Coach for two great games in June against Hungary and Portugal.

“Both matches represent great challenges but I was really happy with what I saw from the players in both matches in March and we’ll be looking to build on some of those positives in June, but also, get that win which I thought the group deserved.

“I have been in contact with Marc Canham since the March fixtures and last week, he asked me about stepping in again.

“As I said before, it is always an honour to represent your country so I’m delighted to continue as Interim Head Coach for June and the work will begin straight away. Also, it’s great to confirm the coaching and performance team will remain for the June fixtures which is great for continuity with the players and staff.

“We will be missing Brian for the two matches in June unfortunately due to commitments elsewhere. He was a fantastic influence in the March window, we will miss his input and expertise for the two matches, and I’d like to thank him for his efforts.”

Kerr said: “It wasn’t possible for me to rejoin the coaching team this time around on account of commitments – personal and professional – that I’d made some time ago.

“I thoroughly enjoyed working with John and the very professional coaching group last month and I wish them well with these next matches in June. Irish football, its welfare, remains a great passion for me.”

FAI make gorgeous gesture to John O’Shea in honour of him being named interim Ireland manager

Ireland drew 0-0 with Belgium before losing 1-0 to Switzerland last month. They will host Hungary on June 4 before facing Portugal in Aveiro a week later. 

Canham – who, along with former CEO Jonathan Hill, has come under fire for being unable to confirm a permanent appointment by now – added: “We’re delighted to extend John and his coaching and performance team for the June fixtures.”

“As confirmed last week, the process to appoint a new Head Coach for our senior men’s team will be concluded ahead of start of the UEFA Nations League.

“I’ve kept in contact with John since the March fixtures and we’re really thankful to John for extending his spell as Interim Head Coach as well as his coaching and performance staff Paddy McCarthy, Glenn Whelan, Rene Gilmartin, Damien Doyle and Stephen Rice.

“Unfortunately, Brian isn’t in a position to be able to join up with the group for the two matches and I’d like to thank him for his input over the last few months and all of his efforts leading up and during the March international window.

“We’re very pleased with what John and the team were able to achieve in the March friendlies and the June fixtures represents another exciting challenge for the team.”

Interim CEO David Courell and President Paul Cooke are now assisting Canham and board director Packie Bonner in the hunt for a new boss.

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