Familiar faces

Damien Duff and Keith Andrews join Kenny's Ireland backroom team

Meanwhile, Jim Crawford takes over the Ireland U21s and will be assisted by John O’Shea.

THE FAI HAS confirmed that former internationals Damien Duff and Keith Andrews have been appointed to Stephen Kenny’s new Ireland backroom team.

Alan Kelly continues as goalkeeping coach having worked in the role under Steve Staunton, Giovanni Trapattoni and Mick McCarthy.

The FAI’s statement this afternoon includes no mention of Robbie Keane, who was part of the staff under previous manager McCarthy but could be set for an exit.

keith-andrews Andrews worked with the U21s under Kenny. Hrach Khachatryan / INPHO Hrach Khachatryan / INPHO / INPHO

41-year-old Duff was capped 100 times by his country and coached with Shamrock Rovers before a move to Celtic. Duff will take up his new role with Ireland on 1 August.

39-year-old Andrews won 35 caps for Ireland during his playing days and was part of Kenny’s U21 coaching set-up.

Meanwhile, it has been confirmed that Jim Crawford has been promoted to position of manager of the Ireland U21 side and will be assisted by John O’Shea, another former senior international.

Waterford native O’Shea is currently part the coaching staff at Reading but will come on board as Crawford steps up from his previous role as the U21s’ assistant manager.

The FAI’s interim CEO, Gary Owens, welcomed the new faces to the senior Ireland coaching set-up in Andrews and Duff.

“The calibre of Stephen Kenny’s backroom team is top class and these are great additions to our senior team coaching staff,” Owens told

“Keith and Damien served Ireland so well as players and their experience will be such an addition to our senior squad’s support team.

“Keith and Stephen have worked brilliantly together with the Under-21 squad and Damien, currently finishing his UEFA Pro Licence with the FAI’s Coach Education department, has impressed everyone with his coaching skills and his switch from world class player to coach.

damien-duff Duff has coaching experience with Shamrock Rovers and Celtic. Oisin Keniry / INPHO Oisin Keniry / INPHO / INPHO

“Alan knows international football inside and was part of the squad at two World Cup finals. He is highly regarded as a coach with Premier League side Everton and has huge experience with Ireland.

“Together, Keith, Damien and Alan have so much to offer Stephen and his players as we look forward to the UEFA EURO 2020 Play-Offs, the Nations League and the World Cup qualifiers.”

Owens also expressed the FAI’s pleasure at being able to promote Crawford with the U21s.

“Everyone at the FAI is delighted with Jim’s promotion to manager from assistant and he has a great number two now in John O’Shea as he takes the next step on his coaching career,” added Owens. 

“On behalf of President Gerry McAnaney, the Board of the FAI and myself, I wish Stephen, Jim and their coaching teams the very best of luck in their new roles.

“We know they will do Irish football proud”. 

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