Academy Manager On Coaching Setup
Ciaran Donnelly is delighted with the strong relationship he has with John Murphy at Blackpool, as the pair look to develop future professionals for the club.
The two former team-mates, who played together at Bloomfield Road in the mid-2000s, have evolved as people and coaches down the years to form a strong double act with the youth team.
"I've certainly changed as a person, from being what he'd probably describe as the annoying little lad who came from Blackburn and was cheeky, whereas he was an experienced pro who a lot of people would consider a legend at the club," Donnelly said.
"From a coaching point of view, Murphs and myself have a great relationship. We feed off each other well and offer our opinions to each other. We rarely disagree over anything that we're going to do, whether that's tactically, the kind of training sessions we put on, or our opinions on players. It's important that you get that when you're working with someone in football - you can ask any manager or coach working in the game and they'll tell you that you need to have that relationship in the game.
"It's a relationship that I want to flourish and for us to continue to work together in the future, and I hope we do. It's beneficial to Blackpool Football Club that we do maintain that relationship and keep trying to achieve the things we've done in the last couple of years."
Relationships have been important at every level this season, with Donnelly relishing his personal link-up with Gary Bowyer again and the overall bond with the first-team setup.
"It's the best situation that we've had as an academy in terms of a relationship with the first-team staff in the time that I've been here. A lot of that is down to the fact that we've moved back to the ground and Squires Gate, so we're changing and training alongside them and integrating all of the time.
"I feel as though we've got this really great relationship between the two at the moment, which also allows for lots of dialogue between us about plans for the young players."