Coleraine’s hunt for new boss goes on after McAree leaves Showgrounds

Coleraine FC

Coleraine have yet to appoint a new manager after agreeing with Rodney McAree that he should leave the club by mutual consent — and the search for a new gaffer goes on.

Ex-Dungannon Swifts chief McAree, who is aged 44, was drafted in to replace Oran Kearney as head coach last September but departed the Showgrounds after for a poor season that saw Coleraine end up sixth in the Premiership.

What didn’t help his cause was the fact that Coleraine missed out on the chance to earn around £200,000 in UEFA prize cash next season when they lost their Europa League play-off semi-final against Cliftonville.

In McAree’s last game in at the helm, the Bannsiders let a 3-1 advantage slip and eventually lost the crucial game 5-3 and a devastating blow was delivered to the club.

A statement to confirm McAree’s departure said:

“Coleraine Football Club have parted company with manager Rodney McAree by mutual consent. McAree leaves the Showgrounds with immediate effect. The board of directors would like to place on record its thanks to Rod for the efforts and commitment he has made since his appointment and wish him well for the future.

“The club will now begin the process of recruiting a new manager. We are inviting expressions of interest for the role of first-team manager at The Showgrounds.

“Coleraine FC are inviting expressions of interest for the role of Coleraine FC manager in the form of CV’s submitted no later than 5pm on Thursday 30th May 2019.

“Those expressing an interest must hold a valid UEFA Pro-Licence, relevant managerial experience in NIFL Premiership or equivalent in another Football Association, experience in the oversight, development and strategic planning of a Football Academy. A comprehensive knowledge of the NIFL Premiership and local game is imperative. Good communication skills, business acumen and interpersonal skills would be required for this role.”

Following the disappointment of the Euro play-off reverse, ex-Fulham, Glenavon and Dungannon midfielder McAree reaffirmed his desire to start building once more with a view to being as competitive as possible for the new campaign.

And at the time he said:

“In the coming days, I will have a chat with the players and finalise plans for pre-season.”

But, tellingly, he added:

“If we had European football our budget would have been healthier, but the defeat maybe now lessens our options.”

There were some reports that Kearney, who left the club to take up a role with Scottish outfit St Mirren, would be keen on a move back to his former club. But he has stated he is more than happy in Scotland and is currently preparing his side for the Scottish Premiership play-off game against Championship side Dundee United tomorrow night (Thursday).

At the time of the speculation, he said:

“From the word go I have made it known my family are in Northern Ireland and I am here to find a way to work with that. Coleraine is a club very close to my heart, of course, because I wouldn’t be sitting here now if it wasn’t for Coleraine.”