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Stephen Kenny: A sort of homecoming

Published on the official Shamrock Rovers website:


It was a sort of homecoming for Stephen Kenny today as he was unveiled as the new Shamrock Rovers manager. The Tallaght native was given a warm welcome by the Shamrock Rovers fans that were present at this afternoon’s press conference. Today’s event was held in the Glenmalure Suite in the Tallaght Stadium overlooking the Rovers pitch; the pitch that Kenny himself captained his schoolboy team on.

Photo by George Kelly

“This is where I’m from,” said Kenny. “It is home for me. The school I went to is just across the road. I captained my school team and this is where we played our matches. This is the pitch more or less. I’ve a great affinity for the area. It is a terrific club, with the infrastructure and the way the club has developed in recent years. It is a great honour to be asked to manage Shamrock Rovers.”

Club Chairman Jonathan Roche sitting beside Kenny looked and sounded very happy to get his new manager who brings a strong CV to the job. “We’ve appointed him on his career so far. It is a massive bonus that Stephen is from Dublin and more especially the area but that is not why he is the manager at Shamrock Rovers. It is his past record and what we think we can achieve together in the future on a similar budget to this year. It is an added bonus that he knows the club and knows the area.”

On the day that former Shamrock Rovers manager Michael O’Neill was named the new Northern Ireland manager, there was a certain symmetry to Kenny coming in the opposite direction this time from Derry to Dublin. Kenny himself made it clear he wants to build on O’Neill’s recent Rovers success but didn’t make any rash predictions for the future. “The club has done terrific in the last few seasons with the last two managers being successful,” acknowledged Kenny. “Pat Scully taking the club up from the first division and Michael O’Neill of course in the past couple of seasons. I will be trying to win matches and challenge for trophies. I want to win as much as I can that has to be the objective. We want to try and fill the stadium. I want to see passionate support and to be playing in front of full houses.”

“It is a new chapter for me coming here. It is a club with a great history. There has been a huge transformation here in the last few years after having no home for so many years when the supporters kept the club going through that difficult period. They’ve had a couple of successful seasons and we want to build on that. You want to be the best you can be as a coach and as a manager. You want to be as successful as you can.”

Kenny will look to bring a positive and exciting brand of football to Tallaght Stadium and build on the tradition of good football played at Shamrock Rovers. “I’m looking forward to coming here to put out a team to play exciting football. I want to entertain the fans. I want them to look forward to coming to games and getting behind the team. I want them to be exhilarated and excited by the football that they come to watch. I’m looking forward to working here at the biggest club in the country.”

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