Portsmouth have confirmed the return of former captain and fans favourite Michael Doyle, with the Irishman becoming the club’s professional development phase coach, as confirmed via a statement on the club’s website.
The 41-year-old has announced his return to the League One side, taking up a coaching role with the club, ahead of the 2023/24 season. Doyle has been out of action since he departed from League Two side Forest Green Rovers, where he was the club’s assistant manager.
Who is Michael Doyle?
Doyle was a product of the Celtic youth set-up, becoming a cult hero with sides like Coventry City, Sheffield United and Portsmouth, winning two promotion medals in back-to-back seasons. He made over 840 first-team appearances throughout his career.
Upon his retirement, Doyle became the assistant manager with Notts County, before following Ian Burchnall to Forest Green Rovers in June 2022. However, he left the club in January 2023 and has remained without a role since.
The dream return
The Irishman is a former Portsmouth captain, helping them to promotion from League Two in the 2016/17 season, before returning to Coventry City and helping them achieve the same thing in his debut campaign.
Doyle will add a unique amount of experience to the League One side, considering the vast amounts of playing experience that he has, as well as knowing the club like the back of his hand.
What’s been said?
Upon returning to the League One side, Doyle stated…
“It’s brilliant to be back and I’m delighted to be working with a young and hungry bunch of players.
“I worked with Rich (Hughes) at Forest Green and I was delighted when he reached out to me.”
As a Coventry City fan, I am made up to see Doyle back in professional football and back to a club that adores him. He is one of the most experienced footballers in the EFL’s history and has now been able to experience a high degree of coaching.
Portsmouth is also a side that is known for developing young players like Conor Chaplin, Ben Close and Jack Whatmough and with someone like Michael Doyle behind the scenes, the club’s success rate is only going to continue increasing.