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Seamus McDonagh to replace Alan Kelly in Ireland set-up

Updated: Friday, 08 Nov 2013 20:56 | Comments

Goalkeeping coach Alan Kelly will be replaced by another former Republic of Ireland netminder in the form of 25-cap Seamus McDonagh
Goalkeeping coach Alan Kelly will be replaced by another former Republic of Ireland netminder in the form of 25-cap Seamus McDonagh

New manager Martin O'Neill has confirmed that Seamus McDonagh will replace Alan Kelly as Republic of Ireland goalkeeping coach.

Kelly will leave his post after eight years as O'Neill's trusted ally at club level joins the 61-year-old and assistant Roy Keane.

O'Neill, who will be formally unveiled at a press conference in Dublin on Saturday afternoon, said: "I spoke to Alan in what was obviously an extremely difficult phone call to have to make.

"The simple situation is that I've worked with Seamus before at club level.

"I'm well aware of how highly thought of Alan Kelly is in Irish football circles.

"I told Alan that I will go and meet him after the upcoming international games to talk to him and tap into his experience."

Kelly, currently goalkeeping coach at Preston, won 34 senior caps for Ireland and has been part of the set-up for two-and-a-half decades.

He said: "To have represented Ireland over the last 25 years a player and a coach has been a privilege and an honour.

"The insight, knowledge and practical experience I have gained over the last eight years as a member of the senior management team, working alongside world-renowned coaches, has given me an invaluable coaching education at the highest possible level.

"I would like to wish Martin, Roy and all the squad the very best of luck for the future."

McDonagh will join O'Neill and Keane on the training pitch in Malahide next week as they prepare their players for Friday night's friendly clash with Latvia at the Aviva Stadium and the trip to Poland which follows four days later.

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