Eóin Kelly's love of the game keeps him busy seven days a week with Avondale and Cork City

There's no let-up for the 41-year-old Douglas man as the League of Ireland returns
Eóin Kelly's love of the game keeps him busy seven days a week with Avondale and Cork City

Avondale and Cork City Women's team kit-man Eoin Kelly.

IF you want something done, ask a busy person to do it.

When someone is busy, full of work it’s normally because he is able and willing to do so and this definitely applies to Cork City women’s new kit manager Eóin Kelly.

The 41-year-old Douglas man took on the new role this season, with an already hectic schedule. However currently managing to balance work along with football, Kelly has found the correct balance and is looking forward to his first season involved in the women’s game.

“This is my first involvement in the league of Ireland setup and I want to improve as a coach and take on board as much as I can with all aspects on and off the field,” said Kelly. "I'm looking forward to the start of the season, pre-season has gone well so far and I've already learned in my development.” 

Kelly was approached by manager Danny Murphy back in October and the opportunity to get involved was something he jumped at.

“Danny contacted me last October to see if I'd be interested in taking up a role so of course, I jumped at the chance because I felt it was a great way to help me improve as a coach and see how a League of Ireland club operated.

“In my current role as Avondale junior premier manager, I've always tried to bring a professional side to my teams to help get an edge over other teams so I was excited to bring that to the women's team to try help them improve on and off the field. It's been a very busy few weeks since I took up the role juggling both roles with Avondale and City's Women's (seven days a week) with my job as well but I've enjoyed it a lot and it keeps me and my mind busy which is good.

Cork City's Aoife Cronin in action against Treaty United. Picture: Brian Arthur
Cork City's Aoife Cronin in action against Treaty United. Picture: Brian Arthur

“My role for the season is basically looking after the girls training kit once they signed up so that's making sure they all got the new season's training gear which had to be squad numbered and sorted to size and I look after the match kit for match days. It's a role I'm well used to because I look after the Avondale kit also so I'm very experienced with a washing machine,” laughs Kelly.


“Of course, with my coaching experience over the past eight years, I also give advice to the girls if I see things in training or on match days and Danny has been very clear and encouraged me to do so to help him and the girls. I love bringing that organisation and professionalism to the teams I'm involved In and it's encouraging to for the girls that their kit is displayed in the right way when they walk into the dressing room.

I'm a firm believer that if your prepared well and you look the part it sets a high standard throughout your team. 

"This is my first involvement in the women's game but it's something I've always wanted to be a part of. I had plans to try and set up a women's team with Avondale but the timing wasn't right so looking at the growth of the women's side of the club with Avondale now is fantastic and everyone involved at the club has done fantastically."

This year of all years is a special occasion the women's football in Ireland with the women's national team qualifying for their first World Cup this summer so the women's game is at an all-time high. 

What is needed to help the women's side is sponsorship and funding by local businesses to help the game improve and grow. 

"When you're a player you don't think about the preparation that goes into getting the gear organised which is understandable but a lot of work goes into making sure the players have everything, they need before a game." 

Avondale and Cork City Women's team kitman Eoin Kelly.
Avondale and Cork City Women's team kitman Eoin Kelly.

He's had other roles in the game, as a committee member with Avondale and lining the pitch in Avondale Park. 

"My aim for the season is to make sure the girls are prepared to the best of my abilities to give them every chance to improve and succeed this season and to improve on last season and to keep the standards high on and off the field to get it to the level it deserves. I have that winning mentality so hopefully, my attitude and willingness to improve helps the girls."

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