Mick McElwee steps down as head coach after Lincoln Red Imps most successful season ever
After what has been one of the most successful seasons for Lincoln Red Imps, having qualified into the group stage of the Europa Conference League, head coach Mick McElwee has decided to step down.
Mr McElwee, who led Lincoln Red Imps to their historic success and finished the domestic campaign with a league and cup double has already become one of the iconic personalities of the club having been with the club since before Gibraltar’s entry into UEFA. Mr McElwee on more than one occasion having stepped into the role of head coach and guiding the club past some rough patches. His latest stint as head coach, following a string of appointments by the club in recent year which left the club with some concerns, acted as a turnaround for the clubs fortunes delivering a new era which has seen the club returning to much of its successful roots. This at the same time delivering success on the pitch and seeing a return of its support base.
His decision to step down from his position as head coach was announced by the club this Monday evening.
The club issued the following statement:-
“LINCOLN Red Imps FC can confirm that Mick McElwee has decided to step down from his position as Head Coach.
He has guided the club through a highly-successful past two seasons which have seen us enjoy a record-breaking adventure in European competition as well as successive League and Cup doubles, including going through the 2021/22 domestic season unbeaten.
“We fully understand and respect Mick’s decision to step down,” said Club President, Dylan Viagas. “His departure will undoubtedly leave an abyss for the club. He is such an iconic individual and what he represents for this club, we will never be able to replace.
“We are fully convinced that his philosophy, ethics and morals have been instilled into other members of the Technical Staff that in turn will allow us to continue moving forward and continue making history on the local and International football stage.
“The club will always be in debt with Mick; not only for everything he has done for us as a player and coach back in our pre-UEFA days, but more so for his commitment to the club over the past two seasons in which we have achieved two League and Cup doubles as well as the unprecedented and extraordinary achievement of qualifying for the group stage of the UEFA Europa Conference League.
“In light of this, the Board will convene in the next few days to review the senior squad Management Team ahead of the start of the UEFA Champions League qualifiers and a Club Announcement will be made in due course.”
Mick McElwee added: “If someone had told me two years ago that I would be Head Coach of the Lincoln first-team and be part of the team to win back-to-back League and Cup doubles, I think I would have questioned their sanity!
“So, when I was asked to come back to a club which holds such a special place in my life, I was honoured and hoped that I would be able to help provide at least a little stability.
“I also felt that, based on the situation of the team at the time, that there was a great opportunity for me to influence things in a positive way.
“It didn’t start off particularly well, but with the help of the players, staff and directors, we built enough momentum to win the League and Rock Cup and qualify for the UEFA Champions League.
“That was the start of a 14-match European tour, which took in Luxembourg, Romania, Slovakia (twice), Latvia, Denmark and Greece and created some unforgettable memories for everyone connected to Lincoln.
“This season has been memorable too as we have remained unbeaten in domestic competition and secured another League and Rock Cup double in impressive fashion.
“After these two successful seasons, I have decided that the time is right for me to step down from my role as Head Coach. The relentless pace of training and matches over the past 21 months has really taken its toll and whilst I am sad to be leaving the team, I am looking forward to having more time to dedicate to my family and other commitments.
“I have to thank so many people who have made the past two seasons so enjoyable. Firstly, the players, who have been nothing short of incredible and their achievements speak for themselves. I would particularly like to thank the group of captains we have as their experience and mentoring of the rest of the group has been invaluable.
“Secondly, the club which has given me all the resources, support and encouragement I have needed to help carry out our objectives.
“Last but by no means least, the technical team has been an absolute joy to be part of. The brilliant mix of talents, expertise, experience and, most importantly, their work ethic has made everything so much easier.
“Raul, Sergio, Daniel, Miguel, Liam, Keith, Adam, Christian, Juanjo, Charles, Alberto and Fran are the team behind the team.
“It’s been an unforgettable and intoxicating experience and there is no doubt that I am going to miss it; the team’s performances and results allow me to go out on a high and I am proud of all of the achievements.
“I am happy to say that I leave the team and club in a good place and I wish everyone all the very best for the future.
“The club will always be a big part of my own personal story.”
We thank Mick for his fantastic efforts on behalf of the club over many years.”