Higgins and Mulholland added to Stephen Kenny’s Irish backroom team
Two men with local connections were last night appointed to Republic of Ireland manager Stephen Kenny’s backroom team as he continues to prepare for his first game in charge, the UEFA Nations League visit to Bulgaria in September.
Dundalk FC assistant manager Ruaidhrí Higgins (pictured above left) will take up the role of Senior National Team Chief Scout and Opposition Analyst while Knockbridge man Kevin Mulholland (pictured right) joins the medical team as a Chartered Physiotherapist.
Joining the pair on Kenny’s backroom team is Portmarnock man Damien Doyle (pictured centre), who has been appointed as Head of Athletic Performance.
A native of Limavady in Derry, Higgins (35) played for Kenny for five years at Derry City. He won the League as a player with Dundalk alongside Stephen in 2014 and won it again as Opposition Analyst and Coach in 2018 and as Assistant Manager a year later.
Like Damien, Kevin Mulholland (35) was part of Stephen’s backroom team with the Irish Under-21 squad as Lead Physiotherapist. Kevin is lead Performance and Injury Prevention Physio at Premier League side Southampton and has also worked with Sheffield Wednesday and Stoke City in the past.
Welcoming the appointments, Ireland manager Stephen Kenny said: “I’m delighted to welcome Ruaidhri, Damien and Kevin, they are great additions to the backroom team. They each have a great work ethic and a high level of professionalism and we are all looking forward to the campaign ahead.”
In a statement to dundalkfc.com last night, Dundalk manager Vinny Perth wished Higgins well in his new role.
“The FAI has reached an agreement to enable Ruaidhri’s departure,” said Perth.
“We put a huge emphasis and value on contracts at this club and we are satisfied that the matter has been dealt with in the correct manner.
“This is a wonderful opportunity for Ruaidhri and he leaves with the well-wishes of everyone in Dundalk,” said Perth.
“He was a popular and valuable member of our backroom team and I would like to thank him for the support and assistance he gave me during his time at the club.
“If you want a championship-winning team, then I believe you need championship-winning staff,” he added.
“Ruaidhri was certainly that and I’ll always be grateful to him for what he did for me.
“For too long, managers have overlooked people in the background but every person, including Ruaidhri, made a huge contribution last season and we all wish him the very best of luck.”