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Gemma Donnelly




Date of birth




Donnelly is the longest serving member of Rovers’ staff, now heading into a 16th season at the Club and starting her seventh full season as Ladies first team manager.

She also fulfils the role of Head of Womens and Girls’ Elite Football, overseeing the Regional Talent Club as well as the Ladies team.

Donnelly started out with Blackburn Rovers Community Trust as the Womens and Girls’ Development Officer and has coached all age groups in the RTC after previously managing grassroots clubs.

The Rovers boss has been in and around the Ladies setup since joining the Club in 2004, experiencing many different operations within the team, including secretary.

After the departure of the first-team management in November 2013, Donnelly took temporary charge for the remainder of the season, securing RoversFA Women’s Premier League status.

Donnelly assembled a new-look squad for the 2014-15 campaign – her first full season in charge – and guided her side to a third place finish in the FA Womens Premier League Northern Division, whilst also securing silverware in the form of the Lancashire Challenge Cup, for the first time in three years.

Since then, Donnelly has delivered five consecutive Lancashire Challenge Cup wins, three consecutive league titles and back-to-back League Cup trophies, as well as securing Rovers’ promotion into the second tier of women’s football.