Derby County Football Club Women

O’Leary Joins Ewe Rams Staff Ahead of 20/21 Season

Ewe Rams Boss Sam Griffiths has added to her Coaching Staff with the appointment of Mark O’Leary as 1st Team Coach for the upcoming 2020/21 FA National League Northern Division Season.

Following the departure of Sarah Green from the Club Staff after nearly 3 seasons at the club, Griffiths has added to the staff, with O’Leary joining fellow 1st Team Coaches Jenny Simpson and Damian Morgan for next season.

Speaking to DCFCW Media, Griffiths spoke of her delight at quickly filling the vacancy and is looking forward to working with O’Leary and adding a different voice to the coaching team.

Griffiths said “It was a blow to lose Sarah from the staff for next season and we wanted to get someone new in quickly so that when we are given the go ahead to return to football, we can hit the ground running and be prepared as much as possible.

“Mark has lots of good qualities but when you look for someone to come into the team, their ability to actually be a Coach comes at the forefront of everything and then you look to their other qualities such as working with both the players and staff and them as a person.

“We firmly believe that Mark will be an asset to the team and we are delighted to have him on board. A new voice in the Staff team will give everyone a boost and I know that our players will like working with him and we can’t wait to get started as soon as possible!”

O’Leary is a UEFA B License coach with experience in both Academy Football and Non-league Football and is relishing the opportunity to dip his toe into Women’s Football for the first time and believes he can have an impact when the new season starts.

O’Leary said “I’m really excited to have joined, I am looking forward to training, meeting the squad and all of the team behind the scenes. I am also looking forward to the challenge within the league as I know it is highly competitive and my targets like Sam’s are to be up fighting for promotion next season.

“I cannot wait for a slightly new challenge working with the women’s team, looking forward to learning and progressing. To be a part of Derby County football club as a whole is exciting. They are such a big club and with living in and around the local I cannot wait to be a part of the team. 

“I am passionate and committed to succeeding and when speaking to Sam it was clear that hers and the teams aspirations are exactly the same so after the conversation with her it was a no brainer to say yes. Sam and I have a good relationship and I am very confident working with her in the future will be a success.”

With details of the upcoming season yet to be released because of the current Covid19 situation, the chance to meet up with the squad and backroom staff has been put on the back burner until safe to do so but O’Leary feels the squad will take to his style of coaching.

“I feel that I am tough but fun. I want the players to work to match intensity but enjoy it when we are training. I feel that I am able to create and maintain good rapport with the players and work with them to improve them in anyway they like. I am a team player and will give 100% to the club and players to help us all meet our goals.

“Fortunately I have been working throughout the whole time of lock-down which has helped keep me to some sort of normality/routine. I also like to keep active so have been working out/running most days whilst we tick things over until we can get back.

“I am a very social person so keeping in contact to family and friends for me is vital which has been done through online quizzes and phone calls which can only help with the mental side of things which I can imagine has been very tough.

“However, I am genuinely looking forward to working with the squad, coaching again in a 11v11 environment and working week by week to prepare the team for matches. I can’t wait to get started and I’m looking forward to the challenge and honour of working with everyone at the club.”