Full Name: Patrick Joseph “Paddy” Kenny
Date of Birth: 17th May 1978
Place of Birth: Halifax (England)
Current Club: Ipswich Town
Goalkeeper Gloves: TheOneGlove Pulse Glove
How old were you when you first started playing football and did you always want to be a goalkeeper?
I started playing from around 9/10 and always played in goal. At the time though I always fancied myself as a striker and scored the odd goal! I think when you’re that age all you want to do is score goals after seeing the top strikers do what they do.
Where and when did you get your big break?
I was playing non league for Bradford Park Avenue when Neil Warnock came to watch someone. Luckily I played really well and stood out enough to be invited down for a trial.
Did you face any obstacles along the way? Or ever think you weren’t going to reach where you are now? If so how did you overcome the obstacles?
When I left school I was told I would never make it as a goalkeeper for being so small. That motivated me and pushed me even more to develop my game, when you hear something like that you could quite easily pack it up but if anything it made me angry, it gave me a point to prove. It just so happened that over the next few years of my development I did in fact grow which never hurts!
Who was your biggest influence growing up?
You’re probably expecting a goalkeeper here but I have to say quite simply my dad by far, both of my parents were always there for me through thick and thin of my development as a player.
How do you prepare for a big game?
I take every game the same, they’re all big to me. I would say I just ensure that I prepare the same way every time, routine helps keep you calm. I’ll relax at the hotel or home, always carry out the same warm up, things like that.
Any tips on warm-ups that you would like to share?
I just think you need to get a bit of everything in there physically, but the real warm-up for any keeper is mental. Getting your mind right. We all know how demanding a position it can be, your concentration levels and general mental strength need to be on another level.
What techniques do you employ to keep yourself focused for the full 90 minutes?
Plenty of talking to the team keeps you concentrated and focused. When your team is performing and you may be having a quiet spell the last thing you want is to drop your level, when the opposition breaks or comes at you you have to be sharp. Communication keeps your mind active.
What goalkeeper gloves do you wear and how important is the right glove to you?
I’m currently wearing The One Glove, their Pulse model specifically. Having the right glove is extremely important, you need to be confident in the glove so there is no excuses. The fit and the grip definitely provides me with that and more. Previously I was also using the their Nova Type 1 which is another fantastic glove, I know a lot of us pros with The One Glove are using them. But I switched to the Pulse in aid of a charity partnership the brand have, every pair sold helps get a boy his much needed operation which is an incredible touch from them. Make sure you check it out on their website.
What are the main features you look for in a goalkeeper glove?
It’s important to have the correct grip not just from the latex but the cut and feel of the glove itself. Confidence and trust in your hands is a must.
Away from the pitch and training what do you enjoy doing?
I’m a family man so spending time with them is important to me, also I enjoy taking the dogs out and I love my golf.
Which football club do you support?
I’m a Man United fan!
Since you started playing what is the most important piece of advice you’ve been given and by whom? My old goalkeeper coach Andy Leaning always told me that after a mistake to draw a line under it, forget it and go again. They happen to the best of us and it’s in the past, you can’t change what has happened so there is no point dwelling on it.
What has been your biggest career highlight so far?
There has definitely been a few, I can’t single out any specific one but two promotions to the Premier League, playing for Ireland and staying up with QPR the day Man City won the league is definitely up there.
Who is/has been your toughest opponent and do you prepare differently to face them?
There has been so many over the years, regardless of how hard a team or player may have been to play against I would always prepare to the same.
What advice would you give to young goalkeepers trying to break through?
Quite simply to train and work as hard as possible. I would point them towards what I said earlier where I was told I would never make it as a goalkeeper. Don’t let anyone dictate your passion and set yourself a goal, if there are negatives take them and use them to push you further. To motivate you. Give yourself a point to prove and take the opportunity when it comes.
The One Glove Company are the supplier of pro standard goalkeeper gloves worn at the highest level right up to the English Premier League. To learn more more about their products, endorsees and more visit them over at www.theoneglove.com