Michael Johnson is new Golden Jaguars Head Coach
The Guyana Football Federation on Monday afternoon announced the appointment of former Jamaican international and UEFA Pro Licence holder Michael Johnson as the new Head Coach of the Guyana Men’s National Football Team.
With the UEFA Pro Licence and the League Managers Association Diploma in Football Management, Johnson is the most qualified national coach in the history of the Golden Jaguars.
The 44-year-old British national brings a wealth of professional coaching and playing experience to the role, alongside sparkling recommendations from the English Football Association, former England manager Sven-Goran Eriksson and the English Premier League.
“I just can’t wait to get started – I’m really looking forward to the project the GFF President and the Technical Director have set out,” Johnson said.
“The attraction of the role was the direction of Guyana: The GFF is looking to really make strides: to qualify for the CONCACAF Gold Cup and to break into the FIFA top 100. But it’s not just about results, it’s also about helping to grow the infrastructure of the country regarding coach education, youth talent, and the possible links between our nations – that’s what’s exciting.”
Johnson was the standout candidate from more than 200 applications received from all over the world. All but one of the shortlisted candidates selected by the GFF following a rigorous recruitment process had obtained the UEFA Pro Licence – the highest coaching qualification in global football.
“The GFF team is delighted to welcome Michael Johnson on board – the best qualified national coach in the history of the Golden Jaguars. With his professional expertise and top-level experience as a player, Michael will set a new gold standard for the football in Guyana,” said GFF President Wayne Forde.
“The GFF is determined to elevate Guyana to the level it belongs – a Caribbean football powerhouse at the top of the regional rankings.”
“I also would like to take this opportunity to offer my heartfelt thanks and respect to former interim coach Wayne Dover for his ongoing service to football, and to the many impressive applicants for the huge interest generated by this role,” Forde said.
Johnson will visit Guyana shortly to meet the GFF team, players, football stakeholders and the national media, and to observe progress in the construction of the GFF National Training Centre at Providence. Full details of his visit will follow.
Johnson was part of the Jamaican national squad that competed at the 2000 CONCACAF Gold Cup and boasts a professional playing career spanning two decades in the English Football League Championship and the English Premier League with clubs such as Derby County and Birmingham City.
His coaching career includes successful stints at Cardiff City, Birmingham City and Notts County. He is currently an ambassador for Derby County, and it is expected that this connection will bring benefits for Guyana, including technical development exchanges, player scouting, and the hosting of training camps and international friendlies in England.
“Michael comes with outstanding references from the very highest level of the game, including former England manager Sven-Goran Eriksson and the English FA. He fits perfectly with the profile we were looking for as we look to build for the future and prepare young Guyanese talent for success at international level,” said GFF Technical Director Ian Greenwood.
“With Michael in charge, we are confident we can qualify for the 2019 CONCACAF Gold Cup, on our way to the 2026 FIFA World Cup.”