Jackie McNamara is a Football Agent, UEFA Pro Coach, and CEO of York City FC.
As a former footballer and manager, Jackie knows only too well what it takes to make a successfull footballer from both sides of the line - and it takes a whole lot more than pure talent and skill. The mental dedication, stamina and hardiness to deal with situations both on- and off- the pitch as you develop and become more successful (and also get through the ruts and hard times!) can make or break a footballer. Exactly the same as what Olympians like Sailing Champion Saskia Clarke say: ‘When people talk about the ‘skills’ required for sports, they often think of sport-specific skills… masting, physics, fitness etc… but mentality is so important. To be a successful athlete, you need more than skills and natural talent, you need to be mentally tough because, if you’re not, you won’t survive.’
Consequently, he's recently turned his hand to agenting - representing players from the youth teams up; to make sure that they're well looked after, not taken advantage off, and learn a rounded set of skills to help them, both as players and as people as they develop and to hold them in good stead throughout their careers.
Read his column for the latest football news and debates.
'Most people don't realise this but Jackie is a keen ambassador for mental health support in sport, and an active supporter of research and charities combatting organ-related health problems (especially the heart and liver), as he's seen first hand the impact that it can have on footballers. He recently climbed one of the highest mountains in the world to raise money and awareness for the cause.'