Pat Scully

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Pat Scully
PatScullyManager.jpg
Personal information
Full name Patrick Joseph Scully
Date of birth (1970-06-23) 23 June 1970 (age 44)
Place of birth Dublin, Ireland
Height 6 ft 3 in (1.91 m)
Playing position Defender
Youth career
1987–1991 Arsenal
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1987–1991 Arsenal 0 (0)
1989 Preston North End (loan) 13 (0)
1990 Northampton Town (loan) 15 (0)
1991–1994 Southend United 114 (1)
1994–1996 Huddersfield Town 74 (2)
1996–2001 Shelbourne
2001–2002 Shamrock Rovers 41 (2)
2003 Drogheda United (0)
National team
1988 Republic of Ireland 1 (0)
1990–1992 Republic of Ireland U23 1 (0)
1990 Republic of Ireland B 2 (0)
1989–1991 Republic of Ireland U21 9 (0)
Teams managed
2005 Kilkenny City
2006–2008 Shamrock Rovers
2009–2012 Limerick
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.
† Appearances (Goals).

Patrick Joseph "Pat" Scully (born 23 June 1970 in Dublin) is an Irish football manager.

An accomplished central defender during his playing days, Scully started his career in England, gaining one international cap, two B caps, one U23 cap and nine U21 caps for the Republic of Ireland during this spell before returning to Ireland.

Playing career[edit]

As a player, he started his career at Arsenal, where he was part of the youth team that won the 1988 FA Youth Cup. However, he played many games for Arsenal's first team, and after loan spells at Preston North End and Northampton Town he slotted into the back four in place of Tony Adams who was unable to fulfill his duties on many occasions due to excessive alcohol consumption. Scully however felt that his career would be better served shoring up the defence at Southend United and duly completed a move to the Essex outfit in 1988 after thrashing out terms behind closed doors with the top brass. He was a regular there for three years playing for a time with Stan Collymore, before moving to Huddersfield Town in March 1994. A month after joining he was a member of the Huddersfield side beaten in a penalty shoot-out in the final of the Autoglass Trophy at Wembley Stadium. He went on to become a key figure at the heart of defence in Neil Warnock's side and helped the Terriers to promotion in the 1994–95 season.

In 1996 he moved back to Ireland to join Shelbourne. Under his captaincy, as well as his defensive abilities, Scully was a constant threat from set pieces and would often score crucial goals for Shelbourne.

Scoring 11 league goals the following season he was the Player of the Month in September 1997 and ended the season as the PFAI Player of the Year in 1997–98.[1]

He signed for Shamrock Rovers in June 2001. He made his debut at Bray on 12 August and scored his first goal against Dundalk on 18 January 2002.[2] Scully captained Rovers during that season, when the club played in Richmond Park. He formed a partnership in defence with Terry Palmer, the Rovers central defender who would later captain the club. Scully led Rovers to the FAI Cup final that season, although he could not prevent Derry City winning the competition with a 1–0 win.

He was then placed on the transfer list after a difference of opinion with manager Liam Buckley. His last game was in Longford on 23 November.

He made two appearances in European competition for the Hoops.

After two goals in 55 total appearances Scully moved to Drogheda United. He made his debut against Rovers on 11 April 2003 and played for one season before retiring.

He was Player of the Year at Southend, Huddersfield and at Shelbourne. Pat Scully has now moved into driving taxi cabs around Dublin town since hanging up his managerial boots.

Managerial career[edit]

He was eager to stay in the game, however, and was offered a chance by Kilkenny City to begin his managerial career. Scully took control of the unfashionable First Division club before the 2005 season.[3]

Although the season did not begin well for Scully and Kilkenny, the side performed excellently during the second half of the season, eventually just missing out on a place in the promotion play-off.

Scully's performance as manager of Kilkenny attracted the interest of Shamrock Rovers, who had undergone massive internal restructuring since Scully's playing days. Gone were the old board of directors, to be replaced by the 400 Club, a supporter's consortium who had saved the club from going under.

The 400 Club sacked Rovers manager Roddy Collins at the end of the 2005 season, which ended with the club being relegated for the first time in their history. Shortly after sacking Collins, Rovers approached Scully and asked him to take over the club.

Scully was installed as Rovers manager and immediately began reshaping the playing squad. He brought several players with him from Kilkenny, with many others signing from Kildare County and other First Division clubs.

The new-look Shamrock Rovers began their first ever season in the First Division with a late 2–1 win over Dundalk, and from there never looked back. The club eventually won the First Division title on the last day of the season, with a 1–1 away draw to Cobh Ramblers.

Scully earned himself a reputation as the best up-and-coming manager in Ireland by winning the First Division Trophy at his first attempt. Rovers finished the 2007 season in 5th position. Unfortunately the young team faded badly in the final stretch and European football was missed out on but despite this it was a good overall season with many positives.

His contract with Shamrock Rovers was terminated by mutual consent on 14 October 2008.[4] The clubtext quoted "Shamrock Rovers and Pat Scully have mutually agreed to part company with immediate effect. The club is thankful to Pat for what he achieved and wish him well."

On 25 March 2009, League of Ireland first division side Limerick F.C. announced that Scully was to take over the vacant managerial role on Shannonside.[5] Scully said: "Having met the board, I was very impressed with their plans for the future of Limerick FC and I look forward to playing my part as manager in the future success of the club."

In September 2011 his contract was extended by two years.[6] In October 2012, Scully won his second League of Ireland First Division title.[7]

In November 2012, Scully was sacked by Limerick.[8][9][10]

Controversy[edit]

His spell in charge of Rovers was not without its controversies, however. Scully is a ruthless professional who expects his players to follow his model, both on and off the pitch. Fallings out with some Rovers players led to a cull of the squad mid-way through the 2006 season.

The biggest controversy of his short managerial career arose out of a television interview, however. While appearing as an analyst on TV3's Eircom League Weekly in August 2006, Scully observed that the league's rulebook needed to be tightened up in order to stop football matters ending up before the courts. The FAI did not take kindly to this criticism and fined Scully €5,000, suspending all but €2,000.[11] Scully briefly threatened to walk away from football, but this was averted when the Rovers board of directors offered to pay the fine on his behalf.

The 2008 season also saw several problems. In the month of June manager and player relations were at a low. Scully is rumoured to have clashed with Barry Murphy, Ger O'Brien and Stephen Rice due to their involvement with the Republic of Ireland Under 23 squad. This led to Rice handing in a transfer request and ultimately being demoted to the Under 21 squad. Rice returned for a match with St. Patricks Athletic on 21 July 2008.

His relationship with other squad members was also questioned following disputes with Dessie Baker and Barry Ferguson during the same period.

Honours[edit]

As a player[edit]

Shelbourne – 1999–2000
Shelbourne – 2000

As a manager[edit]

References[edit]