McDonagh relishing Addicks return
Report by David Brenchley
Page last updated at 4:51PM UTC, Thursday, 23 July 2015
The Charlton women’s team has appointed Paul McDonagh as first team coach, to assist manager Jeremy Parsons ahead of the upcoming FA Women’s Premier League season.
McDonagh, a UEFA A Licence holder, has extensive coaching and scouting experience in both the men’s and women’s game, having recently stepped down as manager of Maidstone United Ladies.
He also spent three years at Dartford FC, where he helped set up their youth academy and girls’ teams and coached and scouted for their men’s team, who currently compete in the National League.
It is a return to the club for McDonagh, who spent a short time coaching our development side, and he is looking forward to getting stuck into coaching a side he believes has Super League potential.
McDonagh said: “I watched them a few times, the midweek games against Spurs and Lewes and was really impressed with everything that was going on.
“There’s a lot of good players in here and from the games I watched, they looked fit, they looked organised – Jeremy had got them really organised on the defensive side of things.
“It’s difficult to say if there’s any one thing to work on but certainly what we’re doing straight away is looking at setting in a formation and nailing down the movement off of that formation.
“We’ve got visions of where we want to go in the short term in terms of formation and long term in terms of getting promotion and that’s the major thing for this season – winning promotion.
“Having watched the team three or four times last year and having watched various other teams in the division and also watching some of the Super League 1 and 2 games, I think there’s no reason why we can’t challenge for it.
“It’s a tough league, though, and it’s even tougher having to do the play off match at the end of it.”
On how the move back to Charlton came about, McDonagh said his love for the club was one main pulling factor, and he is looking forward to building a partnership with Parsons, who guided the club to a treble of cup wins last season.
“I’m a Charlton fan to start with,” he added, “so obviously I love the club whether it’s male or female.
“I met Jeremy in my brief time here three years ago; really nice guy and from my time working at Maidstone Ladies our paths have crossed and we have got on really well.
“My position at Maidstone was pretty much untenable because the support from the club just wasn’t there.
“I had to cancel the [recently arranged] friendly against Charlton and that’s when myself and Jeremy had a serious conversation and he said he’d really like me to come up and I said it makes sense.”
With a requirement of coaches with UEFA A Licences for all Super League teams, the addition of McDonagh ticks one box for the Addicks, should their promotion challenge this campaign be successful.
Whilst at the club previously, McDonagh was in the process of doing his A Licence, which he has since completed, and he spoke a bit about the kind of knowledge the course gave him.
“I learnt a hell of a lot from the course and one of the amazing things about it is the tactical element – everything is based on the tactical side, so you don’t run a session without it based on the opposition or analysis of your own team.
“And it’s not just someone saying ‘let’s do shooting today’, there’s a reason for every session and that’s something that I though was really good.
“Prior courses like the [UEFA] B, [Levels]1 and 2, they really just sort of give you an outline, but the A Licence just brings it all together.”