Louis Nolan enjoys his time at Greenwood and coaching other teams

Louis Nolan enjoys his time at Greenwood and coaching other teams

Louis Nolan Far left Greenwood Manager during a recent training session.

HE saw an opening for a managerial position with Greenwood five years ago. It got him thinking and planning.

Although still playing, he decided he would bite the bullet and try to juggle both. 

That he did, and he hasn’t looked back since.

Louis Nolan from Carrigrohane is the first team manager while also a key player for their second team, who both play in the Cork AUL. 

The 37 year-old is one of many driving forces at the Togher club, who has seen the club go from strength to strength and here he tells us about his coaching journey and his ambitions in both the men’s and women’s game.

“I’ve been playing with Greenwood for about 15 years now and I’ve been coaching for 8-9 years of that time,” said Nolan. 

"I had taken a break from soccer for a few years and decided to go back playing for something to do and joined Greenwood's second team who were playing out of AUL division three at the time. 

"After a couple of years the managers decided to move on and there was an opening there for a manager to step in and take over so I jumped on the opportunity and haven’t looked back since. 

"It was always something I had intended on doing but it came a bit earlier than I expected to be honest.” 

 Like all great managers and coaches, without support from others, their job would be a lot more difficult. 

And for Nolan who s first side are having a superb season, he knows the support he receives from the club is vital.

“The committee has been superb. Kieran McCoy, Norma Kerins and Adrian Coughlan. 

"They have supported me every step of the way, giving me the freedom to implement certain changes and help the club navigate through a transition phase over the last few seasons. 

"The club is going from strength to strength and we are building a foundation for the future with the John Egan Academy which we will hopefully reap the rewards in the coming years. 

"We have an unbelievable group of coaches and coordinators who are looking after the academy at the moment, all of whom are on the FAI coaching pathway.

The Greenwood First team
The Greenwood First team

“Currently with the first team, I have an assistant by the name of Rob Kelly. 

"Rob would have played Munster Senior league with Glasheen and Glencairn back in the day. 

"He is a great man to have because he tells you how it is and that’s exactly what you need from your number two. 

"We started recording games last season and David Minihane is the man who looks after the analysis side of things helping with the breakdown of games etc for team meetings and that has been a huge help.

“With the second team I am solely a player, sometimes James will ask me my opinion on certain things but that’s as far as it goes. 

"It's been a bit of a mixed bag this season where we have found it tough to get into any sort of rhythm with key players having suffered injuries at various parts of the season. 

"We are very much building for next season already as we are out of everything and are not in contention for promotion.

“Our first team is flying this season. When doing this interview, we were currently in second place behind a very strong Springfield side. 

"We are hoping for other results to go our way to have any hope of winning the league but we will keep plugging away.

“This squad of players have been immense this season, they have committed fully to what we are trying to achieve. 

"They have given up a lot of time over the season to attend team meetings and analysis meetings to try to keep on improving and developing and leaving no stone unturned in the process. 

"They are competitive but not combative and they push each other to be better every day which is why we are where we are at this moment. "It’s not just the 11 that take to the field but the squad as a whole and the standards they hold each other to. 

"We sat down at the start of the season and set out our goals for the season which we are very close to achieving.” 

Nolan took on another role recently which involves coaching the Cork senior women’s Angela Heartz team. 

And if that wasn’t enough while having a full time job, he is also in the midst of completing a masters in sports psychology. 

One wonders how he can fit it all in, but when you love the game as much as he does, you will always find time.

“Having a full time job, coaching and playing while also studying and not to forget progressing through my coaching pathway is time consuming to be fair, but I love all roles.

“Both men's Greenwood teams train separately on the same nights but, the second team manager James Dwyer has been spot on. 

"He has given me the opportunity to join in when I can. It’s great for me because I can go and just play without having to worry about the organization side of things. 

"It also keeps me sharp in relation to my own coaching because it reminds me how important the coach/player relationship is and the frustrations that players have. 

"I think you slowly start to forget what it's like as a player when you move into management so it’s good to keep developing that side of it.

“When the opportunity came up to get involved with the Cork ladies team I didn’t hesitate to do so it was an experience that was too good to pass up. 

"I wanted to test myself as a coach and I am really enjoying it so far. There are four of us there. Greg Constant, Seamus Ring and Karl Murphy who would have worked together previously with other teams. 

"I am really enjoying the challenge so far and getting to know all the players. We face Limerick in the group stages on the 22nd May so hopefully we can get a positive result there that will see us book our place in the semis in July.

“I would love to graduate to the elite levels of football but I am under no illusions in relation to the time, effort and experience which is required to do so. 

"For now, I am happy doing what I’m doing and just enjoying the journey that I am on.”

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