Mark Dolan has been involved in coaching since his sixth-form years and over the last 16 years or so, the 32-year-old has been heavily involved in women’s and disability football.
From a work placement with Everton Football Club, assistant manager of Blackpool FC Women and a league promotion with Liverpool Feds, all this has now landed a role with Everton in the Community and EAFA.
Following the appointment of Scott Rogers as head coach of the England National team last December, the St Helens man opted for Dolan to join the coaching team.
Speaking about his first few months involved as a first-team coach, Dolan said: “It’s good, I’m really enjoying it.
“I always say when I’m coaching, that it’s me, it’s what I really enjoy doing.
“To represent both Everton and England is huge for me – when we’re away at the England camps you can see everyone’s passion and enthusiasm for the sport.”
With one of the youngest amputee national teams in the world, anything England can use to their advantage is a positive.
With almost half of the squad representing Everton at club level, Dolan admitted that this can at times play to his advantage when coaching.
“Coaching them every week at Everton allows me to see what their capabilities are and what else they can offer the national team,” said the father of two.
“At club level, it may mean they play slightly different positions or roles but it’s good to understand their versatility and relay this back to the rest of the England coaching staff.”
The national team have been limited with very few opportunities to play competitive football since the World Cup back in October.
However, a trip to Ireland at the beginning of May will give the squad their first taste of competitive football this year and the man from Crosby is relishing the opportunity.
“We need to play as many competitive games as possible leading up to the Nations League as we face some tough opponents in such a high-profile tournament,” Dolan said.
“The more game time we can get in the lead-up to June will allow the players to create a stronger relationship and understanding on the pitch.”
England will face European and World Champions Turkey as well as Poland and Spain in their Nations League group, but it’s down to the players on the pitch to do the talking.
“I’m really excited, I can’t wait to test ourselves against the best, it’s a chance for the team to put down a marker ahead of the European Championships next year,” said Dolan.