AT least one Corkman will be involved in UEFA Euro 2020 next June as Shayne Murphy, a football scientist whose clients include the Scottish national team, will be travelling with the Scots for the tournament.
Shayne was there when Scotland come through a nail-biting penalty shoot-out against Serbia to qualify for their first major tournament since 1998. Shayne will now play a key role in their Euro 2020 Group D clashes against Croatia, Czech Republic and England in June next year.
The football scientist will be responsible for ensuring the Scottish players are physically prepared for the demands of training and games throughout the tournament.
Shayne, originally from Rathcormac in Cork, worked in elite football for over 11 years with clubs like Manchester City and Liverpool before returning to Ireland at the start of the year.
He wanted to bring the same level of expertise and insight he brought to working with footballers of the calibre of Phil Foden and Jadon Sancho to the Irish market through his company SDM Performance.
With bases in Ashbourne and Navan, Co Meath, and ongoing client relationships with the Scottish FA and City Football Group – the company that owns Manchester City and a host of other football clubs around the world – SDM Performance sidestepped the worst effects of the Covid-19 pandemic by focusing on its already growing online operations.
Leaving his role as a sports scientist and strength and conditioning coach with Manchester City FC in December 2019 was a huge step, but Shayne was keen to expand his skills and knowledge across other sports and industries.
When he returned to Ireland, Shayne was a participant on the Back For Business programme which is funded by the Department of Foreign Affairs and supports returned emigrants who are early-stage entrepreneurs.
A call for applications for the new cycle of Back for Business will open later this month.
Now, business leaders, professional footballers and other athletes have signed up for a bespoke service from SDM Performance that enables them to push beyond what they previously thought were their limits.
Shayne Murphy, founder of SDM Performance, says:
“For athletes, assessment usually stems from a movement efficiency standpoint and branches out from there. Trying to identify what each athlete’s function is like at the foot, hip and spine and in all three planes of motion in addition to what that means for their sport is a lengthy process but an extremely rewarding one for the athlete.
"They often have a functioning system (body) that has many energy leaks and so they lose force or power because they haven’t trained themselves to be efficient.
“For businesses, it is about promoting a better culture and understanding how to improve performance. An ideal client is someone who is motivated and determined to improve. I have no doubt in my mind that I can help people beyond their current level, but it takes a committed person to invest in him or herself.
"For clients, it’s about having no regrets, it’s about having maximised their potential and knowing they gave it their best – win, lose or draw.”