A former Irish international and Premier League player has quit his debut managerial role after just 33 days at the helm.
In a move that makes Brian Clough’s Leeds tenure seem Alex Ferguson-esque, an Irish ex-Premier League footballer has resigned from his first managerial post after just 33 days.
He took up the role in late October 2023 before announcing his resignation on Sunday (26 November).
Paddy Kenny – a former Premier League goalkeeper
Paddy Kenny was born in Halifax, England, in 1978, but his Irish parents meant that he was eligible to play football for Ireland. While still uncapped, Kenny said playing for Ireland was his “big ambition in life”.
He met that ambition in 2004 when Brian Kerr gave him game time against the Czech Republic and Croatia. He earned seven caps before temporarily retiring in 2007. Kenny redeclared himself available in 2008 but was never again selected.
Kenny, then, is best remembered for his club career that saw him play across the top three divisions in England. His greatest spell came with Sheffield United. Over the course of eight seasons with the Blades, Kenny played 318 times.
He helped both Sheffield United and London team Queens Park Rangers reach the Premier League and also enjoyed time with the likes of Leeds United and Ipswich Town.
Goole AFC – Kenny’s first managerial post
Goole, who play in the Northern Counties East League Premier Division, appointed Kenny joint manager alongside Nathan Helliwell on 24 October. It marked the former goalkeeper’s first foray into management.
Things began well: a 5-1 league victory against Eccleshill United preceded a 3-0 win against the same opponents in the West Riding County Cup. However, Goole have since suffered defeats against Hallam (3-0), Penistone Church (3-0), Campion (4-2) and Handsworth (6-1).
The team currently sits 19th of 20, with just 14 points from 18 games.
Kenny resigns – after just 33 days
Kenny announced his resignation on Twitter, citing personal commitments for his decision.
“Unfortunately, I’ve not been able to make the last couple of games, so I’m stepping down as Goole manager due to family/work commitments”, he wrote. “Gutted it’s not worked out, but it’s a very demanding job, and I just can’t fully commit”.
He concluded by wishing Helliwell and the club good luck for the future.
His reasoning corroborates his earlier assertion that management was not for him. Kenny tweeted back in July, “People keep asking me why I aren’t [sic.] involved in football, but I’ve dipped my toes in [coaching], but it wasn’t for me.
“I’ve taken a different path now in my life with my transport business, after dinners and been the best dad I can be”.
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