Dr Alan Byrne to step down from MNT Team Doctor role
Having first worked with the Under 15 Boys squad in the late 1990s and then with the senior women’s team & Under 21 men’s squad, Alan assumed a role alongside Professor John O’Byrne with the Senior Men’s Squad under Brian Kerr in 2003, with his first match in February 2004 v Brazil.
He has since worked with managers, Steve Staunton, Giovanni Trapattoni, Martin O’Neill, Mick McCarthy and Stephen Kenny at senior international level. First appointed as Medical Director with the FAI in 2006, Dr Byrne will continue to oversee the medical needs of all Irish international teams, men’s and women’s, at senior and underage level.
He will also carry on leading the FAI’s medical functions including the hugely successful Mrs. Brown’s Boys FAI Heart Care Programme which is currently offering a government-backed defibrillator scheme for all Grassroots clubs.
“I am extremely honoured to have worked with Ireland squads, managers and players since the late 1990s and particularly proud of my association with the senior men’s team since I took up the position in 2003,” said Dr Byrne.
“It is with a heavy heart that I will leave my position with the Senior Men’s team at the conclusion of the Nations League game in September with over 200 games in the role, but I leave a very happy man and I wish Stephen Kenny, Keith Andrews, the team and all of the staff the very best.
“I have been lucky to work with some great managers and players and I particularly want to thank the captains who served as such a great conduit between the players and myself over the years. I will always regard the likes of Kenny Cunningham, Robbie Keane and Seamus Coleman as great friends and I want to thank them for their support.
“I couldn’t finish up without thanking my wife Geraldine and my family who allowed me the time and the freedom to pursue the role in football, an opportunity l that I could never turn down. I will work alongside my successor in the September international window and I look forward to continuing all the work we are doing on the medical front with the FAI.”
FAI CEO Jonathan Hill paid tribute to Dr Byrne’s medical service with Irish teams over the last 20 years. He said: “Alan has been a friend and a medic to so many Irish players, managers, staff and supporters in that time and I want to thank him on behalf of the Association for all his hard work, particularly as doctor with our senior men’s squad. We are delighted that Alan will remain with us as Medical Director moving forward. His work on behalf of Irish football during the COVID-19 pandemic was exceptional and we look forward to working with Alan into the future.”
Republic of Ireland manager Stephen Kenny also paid tribute to Alan's work, he said: "Alan has had a tremendous career with the national team and he had a great relationship with all of the players from the different eras. Alan will continue to work in the FAI as medical director and the association will continue to benefit from his experience and expertise. He has been a great support for the players and staff during my time working with him and we wish him all the best."