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Damien earns national team role

Rovers' First Team Technical Coach will combine club duties alongside a new role with Northern Ireland

3 July 2020

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Rovers can announce that Damien Johnson has linked up with the Northern Ireland national team to take on a coaching role.

Johnson, who won 56 caps for Northern Ireland during his playing days, will combine his role as Rovers' First Team Technical Coach & Head of Player Development alongside his new post as part of Ian Baraclough's national team coaching staff.

Johnson, who appeared 81 times for Rovers as a player, will continue in his current role under Tony Mowbray, which he's held since last summer, and will join up with his country during the international breaks.

Speaking on taking the post, Johnson's looking forward to getting back representing his country, and is thankful and appreciative to have been granted the chance to enhance his coaching skills.

“I’m immensely grateful to the club, the manager, the board or directors and the Owners for allowing me to take this opportunity on," he said.

“Ultimately, my role at Rovers is my priority and the Northern Ireland role is a real bonus for me, which will hopefully help Rovers too.

“It’s an opportunity that I feel will benefit me in my role here at Rovers, working with international players with the international team and seeing what I can bring back to Rovers with me.

“When we have no fixtures then I’ll be across to support Ian Baraclough. I’ve not worked with him before but I know he’s a really good guy.

“I loved playing for my country and I’m looking forward to getting back involved ahead of an exciting era where we’re looking to build on the good work that the team’s had in the recent past.

“I’ve been involved with the Northern Ireland teams since I was 14 or 15, so I’m honoured to be back.”

And recently appointed manager Baraclough is thrilled to get Johnson on board.

“Damien is a young, dynamic coach doing great things and a familiar face to many in the squad," he told the Northern Irish FA's official website.

"As far as the international stage goes, he knows what it’s all about.

"I’m thankful to Tony Mowbray for allowing Damien to join us for what will be a crucial period of football for the men’s senior team.”

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