We are delighted to announce our new management team for the 2022 season.
After two-and-a-quarter years at St Patrick’s Athletic, former Lilywhites captain Stephen O’Donnell has returned to Oriel Park as head coach.
Stephen will work alongside another former Dundalk FC title-winner, Dave Mackey, who has been appointed first-team manager.
Patrick ‘Padge’ Cregg, who was a part of the coaching set up with O’Donnell at Richmond Park, has been named as assistant manager.
Speaking to dundalkfc.com, O’Donnell said he was delighted to be back at a club – and town – that holds a special place in his heart.
“Not only did I play for Dundalk, but I also lived in the town and I know the connection that’s there between the club and the supporters. The mood of the club dictates the mood of the town,” he said.
“When you have a football-crazy town like that, the potential is massive, and I felt I couldn’t turn this opportunity down.
“It’s a challenge I’m really excited about, and I can’t wait to get cracking with Dave and Padge now.”
Mackey is also very familiar with Oriel Park. The Dubliner, whose last spell in management came with Bray Wanderers in 2018, was an integral part of Turlough O’Connor’s Dundalk side that won the league title in 1991.
“I am delighted to be back at Dundalk,” he said. “I’m looking forward to working with Stephen, Patrick, and the management team in the exciting project that lies ahead. We are focused on building a bright future for the club.”
A former teammate of O’Donnell’s during their playing days at Falkirk, Cregg said he was relishing the chance to work with the Galway native again after they both helped Pat’s to the FAI Cup and a second-place finish last season.
“I’m really looking forward to it,” he said. “I’m extremely grateful to everyone at St Patrick’s Athletic for my time there, but my focus now is on doing the very best for Stephen, Dave, the rest of the staff and the players which, in turn, leads to doing the very best for Dundalk Football Club and the fans.”
“We believe we have identified and secured a coaching team that will make us very competitive, both next season and beyond,” said Dundalk FC chairman and co-owner Sean O’Connor.
“We have a nice blend of youth and experience which really excites us, and the fact that Stephen and Dave already understand the DNA of Dundalk FC, and know what makes the club tick, is a great starting point.”
“Stephen is the best young coach in this country and to have him back at Oriel Park, where he led us to so many trophies as a player, is fantastic,” said Lilywhites co-owner Andy Connolly.
“He was paramount to our success during the Stephen Kenny era and is a very special person who is hungry and has the same objectives that we do. I’m sure our fans will be absolutely delighted to see him return.
“Patrick is another coach with a bright future ahead of him and has already built up a brilliant understanding with Stephen over the past couple of seasons at St Patrick’s Athletic.
“It is also great to see Dave Mackey back at Dundalk,” he added. “Dave has been involved in the League of Ireland for almost 40 years and brings a wealth of knowledge to the role which will be invaluable to Stephen, Patrick, and everyone at the club.”