Paddy Power News can sensationally reveal that the Republic of Ireland new soccer boss – or should that be bosses? – Mick McCarthy and Stephen Kenny will take turns managing the national football team – and could even split duties during games.
Contrary to widespread reports, the Football Association of Ireland has clarified the arrangement they’ve made with the former Ipswich chief McCarthy and his Under-21s colleague Kenny after initial reports suggested the latter would succeed McCarthy after the 2020 European Championships regardless of results.
And, while Mick is still top dog for Ireland’s next game, with the opponents to be decided by this Sunday’s UEFA qualifying draw in Dublin, it’ll be the younger of the two bosses who’ll be barking instructions from the touchline in the second game of the campaign.
The FAI has confirmed that Kenny, 47, will have free rein to select his own squad, bring in his own staff, and implement his own system for the games he takes charge of – before they’re all slung out and replaced with Mick’s for the next game.
A spokesman for the FAI explained: “We’re setting out on a new path – two in fact – with this radical new approach to management.
“Any suggestion that the only thing we can expect is failure from fudging this situation is way off the mark.”
“The best teams in the world rotate their players. We’re taking that model and applying it to the manager’s position.”
“When you’ve got two managers of this calibre, and each with their own valuable insights and expertise, you’d be foolish not to try to take advantage of their wealth of experience and tactical acumen.”
Undimmed by the failure of their pairing of Steve Staunton and Bobby Robson in 2006, the organisation is pressing ahead with this radical new approach to appointing a boss. The suggestion this approach has been adopted due to a lack of faith on the FAI’s part because of Kenny’s League of Ireland record has been roundly dismissed.
“Like players, sometimes managers have off-days. They just don’t hit the mark with their team-talk, or they aren’t quite getting the optimum space between the cones in training.
“If Stephen is struggling to connect with players used to the bright lights of Rotherham, Brentford or Millwall, Mick’ll know how to speak their language on the training ground.”
“This is modelled on best practice in many fields. Job-sharing has been shown to make organisations more efficient and agile in their response to the unexpected.
“It’s a completely new way of setting up the national team for success.”
Whether it ll goes to plan remains to be seen.
The Rebound is Paddy Power’s weekly breaking news story that may not actually have happened or be real in any way.