Northern Irishman Jonathan McKinstry who is a UEFA Pro licensed football manager has this morning been unveiled by the Federation of Uganda Football Associations (FUFA) as the New Head Coach of Uganda’s Senior Men Football Team ‘the Uganda Cranes’ replacing Frenchman Sebastien Desabre who left for Egyptian Premier League outfit Pyramids FC.
McKinstry who has been the Head Coach of Bangladesh Football Premier League team Saif SC will take immediate charge of the Uganda Cranes CHAN team that has a second leg qualifier to negotiate against Burundi at Lugogo this weekend. The CHAN team won 3-0 away in Bujumbura under the guidance of local caretaker coach Abdullah Mubiru.
Born on 16 July 1985, McKinstry has previously managed the Rwanda national team, the Sierra Leone national team, and Kauno Žalgiris in the A Lyga. Whilst in charge of Sierra Leone, McKinstry was the youngest international manager in the world at 27 years old.
He has coached in several countries; Northern Ireland, England, USA, Ghana, Sierra Leone, Rwanda and Lithuania. His early career was focused on elite youth development through roles with Newcastle United, New York Red Bulls, the Right to Dream Academy and the Craig Bellamy Foundation.
In 2013 McKinstry moved into senior professional football when he was appointed the manager of the Sierra Leone national football team, whom he guided to their highest ever FIFA World Ranking position.
He has more recently been the manager of the Rwanda national football team guiding them to the Final of the 2015 CECAFA Cup and Quarter Finals of the 2016 African Nations Championship, and of Kauno Žalgiris of Lithuania’s A Lyga.
In December 2017 McKinstry was shortlisted by the Ugandan FA for their national team manager position and in April 2018 he was one of 77 applicants for the vacant Cameroon national team job.
It was also confirmed by officials of the Football Association of Zambia in June 2018 that McKinstry had made the final 2-man shortlist of candidates under consideration to be named Head Coach of the Zambia national football team.