Leitrim manager Jonny Garrity learned firsthand from the culture of Manchester City. GAANews

Main menu


Leitrim manager Jonny Garrity learned firsthand from the culture of Manchester City. GAANews

Johnny Garrity named Leitrim women’s soccer manager for 2023

While he’s not weary of questions about his time spent at Manchester City and the £200m Etihad campus, Jonny Garrity is quick to point out that he hasn’t worked directly with the first team.

It was still an important achievement for the young Tyrone man, who stood shoulder to shoulder with Patrick Vieira and others at one of the greatest football clubs in the world.

Garrity also spent seven months learning from Coaching Elite and now returns to Fermanagh as Game Development Officer to manage Leitrim for the 2023 season.

While he has a serious pedigree and has strayed a bit from his adult grades to focus on closer-to-home affairs, namely the Tyrone Ladies’ minor team, he’s looking to breathe new life into Leitrim. And it starts with the culture he learned in Manchester five years ago.

“Culture will be central to what I do in management, as I have been exposed extensively during my undergraduate and master’s degrees,” says Garrity.

“Seeing it in action at Manchester City was really meaningful to my progress and I could actually see it walking down the corridor. If a youth player walks past you, they raise their hand for a high five.

The Etihad Campus is a state-of-the-art facility

The Etihad Campus is a state-of-the-art facility

“It was easy because there was a coaching staff uniform there. They may not have had you before, but they respected you because you were there. It was great.”

“Depending on what training or games were going on at any given time, I would go into the cafeteria and there would be different teams eating and they would mingle. And she was a great leader for her group. I made sure everyone was okay and talked to everyone.

“It was a really positive culture and a great place. It was a learning environment and a deeply respected environment.

“I think it makes a big difference. You are talking about the value of every individual within an organization. It should be put to people.It is the understanding that everyone has a role.No matter how big or small the part can be played.

“At Leitrim right now, it’s a matter of trying to make sure you have the right people in the room. That’s the first thing. Yes, we’re trying to pick the best football players in the county. But I We should also pay close attention to their mental qualities and what they bring to the environment.”

Garrity previously managed Fermanagh's women's soccer players.

Garrity previously managed Fermanagh’s women’s soccer players.

A Fintona native, he first studied Exercise and Sports Science at Manchester Metropolitan University. After realizing his primary education wasn’t for him, he earned his master’s degree that would eventually pave the way for an unlikely stint at the Etihad.

“It was something out of left field.” Garrity was offered a job as a performance analyst at Manchester City Academy by Dr. Ryan Groom, the head of the master’s program with Man City ties. rice field.

“You let go of their hands when he suggested I go to Manchester City.

“It was a really successful time. You could feel the buzz around the place. There is no doubt about it. There are very high standards around the academy that I was involved with. At that time .”

Garrity never worked directly with Pep Guardiola or the first-team squad, with separate entrances to the Ladies and Academy squads and coaching squads.

Yet he was able to experience breakthrough talent like Phil Foden and Jadon Sancho.

“Obviously I’m keeping an eye out for players I’ve met in person,” Garrity said.

“At the same time, my passion is Gaelic football, and if I watched football, I would want to watch more Celtic games. Otherwise, I wouldn’t be a big supporter of football.

“Of course I was keeping an eye on the staff who were there when I was there, but also on the staff. If I saw them move to other clubs and work with different managers. , they will be delighted too.

“And I was probably involved with different age groups. Probably most of the time I was depressed in U13s and U15s. Only a few times I was helping U23s and U21s. That kind of thing.” You’ll run into superstar players, and they’ll stand out.

“But everyone should grow at their own rate and not discount anyone at the same time.”

Everyone grows at their own rate and no one should be underestimated.

Garrity learned through experience

Garrity, now 40, and his wife Kayleigh are expecting their first child this December.

Working in Tyrone’s underage setup gave Garrity another chance to grow his resume and skill set. But he’s ready to go back in big times.

“It’s a lot different than being a minor,” Garrity said.

“It took a lot of getting used to. The main difference we found was that access to the players was much more restricted. You can pull in a quick team meeting.

“But for underage girls, we have to be aware that in some cases they are not driving. You cannot be in a WhatsApp group with them. It will be the parents through the contact person. .

“It’s a little bit harder to get the culture you want. It’s a little bit more removed than the senior role and some steps are removed.”

The culture continues to thrive, and if he gets it right at Leitrim, he feels the opportunities are endless in a county that cries for success in the Lidl NFL and TG4 All-Ireland Championships.

“We can’t wait to get started. We are now in that position doing the due diligence and looking at the players and seeing who fits into the group from a football feel and a sense of mentality. said Garrity.

“It’s a really exciting part of the process, but I’m really looking forward to the teams being named and the girls coming into the room.”