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Owen Coyle

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Title: Owen Coyle  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: 2009–10 in English football, 1996–97 Dundee United F.C. season, 2003–04 Dundee United F.C. season, Scottish Football League monthly awards, Premier League Manager of the Month
Collection: 1966 Births, Airdrieonians F.C. (1878) Players, Airdrieonians F.C. Players, Bolton Wanderers F.C. Managers, Bolton Wanderers F.C. Players, Burnley F.C. Managers, Clydebank F.C. Players, Dumbarton F.C. Players, Dundee United F.C. Non-Playing Staff, Dundee United F.C. Players, Dunfermline Athletic F.C. Players, Falkirk F.C. Managers, Falkirk F.C. Players, Houston Dynamo Coaches, Living People, Motherwell F.C. Players, Premier League Managers, Premier League Players, Republic of Ireland Association Footballers, Republic of Ireland Football Managers, Republic of Ireland International Footballers, Republic of Ireland Under-21 International Footballers, Republic of Ireland Under-23 International Footballers, Ross County F.C. Players, Scottish Football League Managers, Scottish Football League Players, Scottish Football Managers, Scottish People of Irish Descent, Scottish Premier League Players, Scottish Roman Catholics, Sportspeople from Glasgow, St. Johnstone F.C. Managers, St. Johnstone F.C. Players, The Football League Managers, Wigan Athletic F.C. Managers
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Owen Coyle

Owen Coyle
Owen Coyle is introduced as Houston Dynamo Head Coach, Dec 9, 2014
Personal information
Full name Owen Columba Coyle
Date of birth (1966-07-14) 14 July 1966
Place of birth Paisley,[1] Scotland
Height 5 ft 11 in (1.80 m)
Playing position Striker
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1985–1988 Dumbarton 103 (36)
1988–1990 Clydebank 63 (33)
1990–1993 Airdrieonians 123 (50)
1993–1995 Bolton Wanderers 54 (12)
1995–1997 Dundee United 38 (5)
1997–1999 Motherwell 79 (25)
1999–2001 Dunfermline Athletic 47 (10)
2000–2001 Ross County (loan) 5 (2)
2001–2002 Airdrieonians 45 (29)
2002–2003 Falkirk 36 (20)
2003–2004 Dundee United 3 (0)
2003–2004 Airdrie (loan) 23 (13)
2004–2005 Airdrie United 34 (14)
2005–2007 St. Johnstone 16 (0)
Total 669 (249)
National team
1989 Republic of Ireland U23
1994 Republic of Ireland 1 (0[2])
Teams managed
2003 Falkirk[3]
2005–2007 St. Johnstone
2007–2010 Burnley
2010–2012 Bolton Wanderers
2013 Wigan Athletic
2014– Houston Dynamo

* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.

† Appearances (goals)

Owen Columba Coyle (born 14 July 1966) is a former professional football player and manager who is the current head coach[4] of Houston Dynamo.

Paisley-born Coyle began his career at Dumbarton. He played for a number of Scottish teams as well as a spell at English club Bolton Wanderers. He was capped once by the Republic of Ireland, having qualified through Irish descent. He also played for the Republic of Ireland national under-21 football team.[5]

Upon retiring from playing, he managed Falkirk and St. Johnstone before heading to then Championship side Burnley. In his first full season in charge, Burnley won promotion to the Premier League. He then moved to Bolton halfway through his first season in the Premier League. Coyle was appointed manager of Wigan Athletic in June 2013 only to leave the club on 2 December 2013.


  • Playing career 1
    • Club 1.1
      • Early career in Scotland 1.1.1
      • Bolton Wanderers 1.1.2
      • Dundee United 1.1.3
      • Motherwell and after 1.1.4
      • Post–retirement 1.1.5
    • International 1.2
  • Managerial career 2
    • St. Johnstone 2.1
    • Burnley 2.2
    • Bolton Wanderers 2.3
    • Wigan Athletic 2.4
    • Houston Dynamo 2.5
  • Statistics 3
    • Manager 3.1
  • Honours 4
    • As a player 4.1
    • As a manager 4.2
    • Personal 4.3
  • Outside of football 5
  • References 6
  • External links 7

Playing career


Early career in Scotland

Coyle began his senior career with Dumbarton in 1985 where he played alongside his brothers Joe and Tommy. In 1988 he joined Clydebank. In March 1990 a £175,000 transfer took him to Airdrieonians. This move was instantly successful, Coyle scoring a hat-trick on his debut and going on to finish as the Scottish League's top scorer for 1989–90. Over the next two seasons his goals helped Airdrie to promotion, a Scottish Cup final appearance, and an appearance in the 1992–1993 European Cup Winners' Cup – as Scottish Cup winners Rangers, had won the Scottish Premier Division title and qualified for the European Cup.

Bolton Wanderers

In the summer of 1993, Bolton Wanderers paid £250,000 to sign Coyle, and his two-year spell in England included promotion and a brief chance to play in the FA Premier League. He was a key part of their Division One promotion winning side in 1995, scoring a 75th-minute goal against Reading in the playoff final which gave Bolton a lifeline to peg the scoreline back to 2–1. With 90 minutes on the clock, the score was 2–2 and Bolton won 4–3 in extra time to end their 15-year exile from the top flight.[6]

Dundee United

However, in October 1995, a £400,000 transfer fee took him to Dundee United, where he was once again part of a promotion-winning side, scoring the winning goal in extra time in the second leg of the playoff against Partick Thistle.

Motherwell and after

Coyle's next moves were to Motherwell in January 1997, after a move to Hibernian fell through,.[7] In March 1999 he moved to Dunfermline Athletic. After losing his place in the Dunfermline team, he went on loan to Ross County. He-rejoined Airdrieonians in 2001 but they went into liquidation in 2002. Coyle joined Falkirk, being promoted to co-player-manager alongside John Hughes in 2003. After leaving this post he returned to Dundee United, primarily in a coaching capacity but also registering as a player. A lack of first team opportunities, however, led to him being loaned out to Airdrieonians' successors, Airdrie United. This move was subsequently made on a permanent basis. He also took up the post of assistant manager to Sandy Stewart.


He played in an emergency for Burnley Reserves on 9 April 2009, scoring with a lob in a 2–0 win against Accrington Stanley, helping them win the Reserve League title.[8] On 7 October, Coyle played again for Burnley Reserves in a 1–0 defeat to the Liverpool Reserves at Prenton Park.[9]

On 15 November 2010, Coyle returned to playing action at the age of 44 when turning out for Bolton in their friendly match with Northern Ireland side Cliftonville. It was the first time in fifteen years that he had started a game for Bolton and he chipped in with a goal in a 2–0 Wanderers win.[10]


A former Republic of Ireland under-21 international, Coyle earned one full international cap, in a friendly match played against the Netherlands in Tilburg in April 1994. The match ended in a 1–0 victory for the Republic, with Coyle coming on to replace the goalscorer Tommy Coyne in the 83rd minute.[11]

Managerial career

St. Johnstone

In April 2005, Coyle was named as the new manager of St. Johnstone.[12] In March 2006, he was awarded Manager of the Month for the Scottish First Division for his team's performance. Coyle led St. Johnstone to a 2–0 victory over Rangers at Ibrox to reach the semi-finals of the Scottish League Cup.[13] It was their first win over the Glasgow club at Ibrox in 35 years. St. Johnstone lost 3–1 after extra time to Hibernian in that semi-final. Saints also reached the semi-finals of the Scottish Cup thanks to away wins against SPL clubs Falkirk and Motherwell, but lost 2–1 to Celtic at Hampden in the semi-final.[14]

In the same season, Saints also competed for the First Division championship and promotion to the SPL. On 30 March 2007, Coyle was awarded his second Scottish First Division Manager of the Month award of the 2006–07 season.[15] Saints took the title fight with Gretna to the final day of the season, and only a last minute goal by James Grady that gave Gretna victory at Ross County denied Saints promotion.

Coyle signed a one-year extension to his contract with St. Johnstone in July 2007, which would have kept him at the club until the end of the 2009–10 season.[16] In the early part of the 2007–08 season, Coyle led Saints to the 2007 Scottish Challenge Cup Final. He accepted an offer from Burnley in the week before the final and left the club. Coyle's assistant Sandy Stewart took charge of the team for the final, which was won 3–2 against Dunfermline Athletic.


On 21 November 2007, Burnley were granted permission to discuss their managerial vacancy with Coyle after a compensation fee was agreed with St. Johnstone.[17] He was appointed as Burnley's new manager the following day.[18] Coyle was given a reference by then Scotland manager Alex McLeish to support his Burnley application, and was also recommended by Bolton chairman Phil Gartside after they appointed Gary Megson as their new manager, as Coyle was Gartside's 2nd choice for the Bolton job after Megson.[19]

In September 2008, former England striker Andrew Cole credited Coyle as the reason he re-thought his decision to retire from playing at the end of the 2007–08 season. Cole spent three months on loan at Burnley that season, and Cole stated, "I went to Burnley and spoke to Owen and got a great vibe. He brought the best out of me and made me feel a lot younger than my age."[20]

He won the September 2008 Championship Manager of the Month award after leading Burnley to 5 wins and a draw, which included a League Cup win over Premier League side Fulham. In November Burnley secured a victory over Premier League side Chelsea on penalties at Stamford Bridge to put them in the quarter-finals of the League Cup. In the quarter-final, Burnley defeated Arsenal 2–0. They were knocked out in the semi-finals in dramatic fashion, after overturning a 4–1 deficit by winning 3–0 at Turf Moor after 90minutes. Burnley were little more than three minutes away from a famous win and a trip to Wembley, when Roman Pavlyuchenko scored to win the tie in extra time for Tottenham Hotspur.

Burnley, under Coyle, won promotion to the Premier League by beating Sheffield United 1–0 in the Championship Play-off Final at Wembley Stadium on 25 May 2009.[21] The 2009–10 season was the first time Burnley had played in top tier of English football for 33 years. Coyle added to his squad by signing Tyrone Mears from Derby County for £500,000 & Steven Fletcher from Hibernian for a club record fee of £3,000,000 and also David Edgar signed on a free transfer from Newcastle United on 1 July 2009.

After speculation linking Coyle with the vacant manager's position at Celtic, on 18 June 2009, Coyle signed a contract extension at Turf Moor to stay with Burnley until the end of the 2012–13 season.[22]

On 19 August 2009, Burnley defeated the defending Premier League champions Manchester United 1–0 at Turf Moor in their first top-flight match at home for 33 years.[23] They went on to win their first four home games with wins against Everton 1–0 Birmingham 2–1 and Sunderland 3–1 and lose their first 5 away games.

Bolton Wanderers

In January 2010, Bolton Wanderers expressed their interest in Coyle becoming their new manager to replace the recently sacked Gary Megson, with Coyle expressing a desire to leave Burnley and take up the position.[24] On 5 January, Burnley's chairman announced that Coyle had left the club.[25] On 8 January, Coyle was appointed as Bolton manager.[26] His first game in charge was a 2–0 home defeat to Arsenal.[27] He achieved his first win on 23 January 2010, 2–0 in the FA Cup 4th Round at home to Sheffield United and achieved his first league victory against former club Burnley, 1–0 on 26 January 2010.[28] He achieved his first away victory at the club on 6 March, 2–1 at West Ham United. When Bolton next played Burnley Coyle was called "Judas" by the Burnley fans as they felt that he had betrayed them. He retaliated to these comments by saying that if they (Burnley fans) were going to use biblical terms about him and his time in charge of their club, he should be referred to as 'Moses' for leading them out of the wilderness. Coyle's first signings for the club were Stuart Holden from MLS side Houston Dynamo on a short-term contract and Manchester City winger Vladimir Weiss and Arsenal's Jack Wilshere on loan until the end of the season. Coyle achieved his goal of keeping Bolton in the Premier League by finishing 14th with 39 points, nine clear of relegated Burnley.

On 1 July, he signed Martin Petrov from Manchester City and Robbie Blake from Burnley on free transfers, making them his first summer signings. Coyle also later signed Marcos Alonso from Real Madrid for an undisclosed fee and also brought Ivan Klasnić back to the club on a free transfer after spending the previous season on loan at the Reebok. In January 2011, he made two further signings, buying David Wheater from Middlesbrough and signing Daniel Sturridge on loan from Chelsea until the end of the season. In his first full season at the club, Coyle's team finished 14th in the Premier League and reached the semi-final stage of the FA Cup, where they were beaten 5–0 by Stoke City.

On 13 May 2012, Bolton were relegated to The Championship, following a 2–2 draw at Stoke City on the final day of the season.

Bolton started the 2012–13 season against his former club Burnley, against whom they lost 2–0. They then went on to win against Derby County and draw against Nottingham Forest, both of which were at the Reebok Stadium. This meant the club had played three matches in a week. The following week, Bolton lost 3–1 to Hull City. In The Bolton News' report of the match, chief sports editor Marc Iles wrote, "Sections of Wanderers fans called for Owen Coyle to leave his post as the club fell to a dire 3–1 defeat at the KC Stadium, The anti-Coyle chants continued after the final whistle, leaving the club potentially with a lot to think about heading into the international break."[29] The following match, against Watford was won 2–1, although fans still booed after the full-time whistle.[30] However, they then lost to Birmingham City 2–1 at St Andrew's. Coyle's time at the Reebok Stadium came to an end on 9 October 2012, when it was confirmed by the club that Coyle's contract with Bolton had been terminated.[31]

Wigan Athletic

On 14 June 2013, Coyle was announced as the manager of Wigan Athletic following the departure of Roberto Martínez to Everton.[32] His first game in charge of Wigan was against Barnsley in the Championship, which Wigan won 4–0. His second game was against Manchester United in the Community Shield where United won 2–0.[33]

Coyle left Wigan on 2 December 2013, with Wigan losing for the third time in a week, and lying 14th in the table.[34][35]

Houston Dynamo

Coyle as a coach of Houston Dynamo in 2015

On 8 December 2014, Coyle agreed to a three-year deal to become the head coach of MLS club Houston Dynamo. The announcement was previously delayed due to the MLS Cup Final. [36]



As of 13 September 2015[37]
Team Nat From To Record
G W D L Win %
Falkirk 31 January 2003 20 May 2003 19 12 3 4 63.16
St. Johnstone 15 April 2005 22 November 2007 70 36 19 15 51.43
Burnley 22 November 2007 5 January 2010 116 49 29 38 42.24
Bolton Wanderers 8 January 2010 9 October 2012 126 42 24 60 33.33
Wigan Athletic 14 June 2013 2 December 2013 23 7 6 10 30.43
Houston Dynamo 8 December 2014[38] Present 31 11 8 12 35.48
Total 385 157 89 139 40.78


As a player

Dumbarton F.C.
Bolton Wanderers F.C.
Airdrieonians F.C.
Airdrie United F.C.

As a manager

Falkirk (co-manager with John Hughes)
St Johnstone


Outside of football

Coyle was born in the 'Little Donegal' area of Glasgow to parents from Ireland and is a frequent visitor to Gweedore, County Donegal.[39] He made an appearance in the Scottish football film A Shot at Glory, in 2000, alongside The Godfather star Robert Duvall, Michael Keaton and Ally McCoist. He has been described as a committed Christian and teetotaller.[40]

A sign reading "Owen Coyle is God" featured prominently in many camera shots at WrestleMania 25 in April 2009, introducing his name to a wider audience.[41]


  1. ^ "Owen Coyle". Retrieved 5 June 2013. 
  2. ^ Owen Coyle at
  3. ^ Falkirk FC Managers
  4. ^ [3]
  5. ^ "Coyle aims to repay faith by felling his mentor". Daily Mirror. 11 February 2011. Retrieved 31 August 2011. 
  6. ^ [4]
  7. ^ Boden, Chris (1 October 2009). "Burnley FC boss' old pals' act". Burnley Express. Retrieved 2 October 2009. 
  8. ^ "Burnley | Team | Reserves | Reserves | Burnley Reserves 2 Acc Stanley Reserves 0". Retrieved 5 January 2010. 
  9. ^ "Burnley | Team | Reserves | Reserves | Liverpool Res 1 Burnley Res 0". Retrieved 5 January 2010. 
  10. ^ "Cliftonville 0 Wanderers 2". Retrieved 15 November 2010. 
  11. ^ "Holland 0 Ireland 1". Retrieved 4 January 2010. 
  12. ^ "Coyle becomes St. Johnstone boss". BBC News. 15 April 2005. Retrieved 10 June 2009. 
  13. ^ "Rangers 0–2 St. Johnstone". BBC News. 8 November 2006. Retrieved 10 June 2009. 
  14. ^ Moffat, Colin (14 April 2007). "St. Johnstone 1–2 Celtic". BBC News. Retrieved 10 June 2009. 
  15. ^ "Coyle picks up managerial award". BBC News. 26 March 2007. Retrieved 10 June 2009. 
  16. ^ "Coyle signs on for more at Saints". BBC News. 12 July 2007. Retrieved 10 June 2009. 
  17. ^ Burnley can talk to Coyle, St. Johnstone FC official site.
  18. ^ "Coyle named new Burnley manager". BBC News. 22 November 2007. Retrieved 10 June 2009. 
  19. ^ "Owen Coyle handed reins at Burnley after Alex McLeish voices support", The Times Online
  20. ^ "Cole reveals Coyle's inspiration". BBC News. 12 September 2008. Retrieved 10 June 2009. 
  21. ^ "Burnley 1–0 Sheff Utd". BBC Sport. 25 May 2009. Retrieved 18 June 2009. 
  22. ^ "Coyle pens four-year Burnley deal". BBC Sport. 18 June 2009. Retrieved 18 June 2009. 
  23. ^ "Burnley 1 – 0 Man Utd". BBC Sport. 19 August 2009. Retrieved 20 August 2009. 
  24. ^ "Burnley & Coyle mull over future after Bolton approach". BBC News. 22 November 2007. Retrieved 5 January 2010. 
  25. ^ "Owen Coyle leaves Burnley". Yahoo! Eurosport UK. Retrieved 7 January 2010. 
  26. ^ "Owen Coyle appointed Bolton manager". BBC News. 8 January 2010. Retrieved 8 January 2010. 
  27. ^ "Bolton 0 – 2 Arsenal". BBC Sport. 17 January 2010. Retrieved 25 January 2010. 
  28. ^ "Bolton 2 – 0 Sheff Utd". BBC Sport. 23 January 2010. Retrieved 25 January 2010. 
  29. ^ Iles, Marc (1 September 2012). "Hull City 3 – 0 Bolton". The Bolton News. Retrieved 9 October 2012. 
  30. ^ "MATCH VERDICT: Wanderers 2–1 Watford". The Bolton News. 17 September 2012. Retrieved 18 September 2012. 
  31. ^ "Owen Coyle is sacked by Bolton Wanderers". BBC Sport. Retrieved 9 October 2012. 
  32. ^ "Coyle appointed as new Wigan boss". BBC Sport. 14 June 2013. Retrieved 14 June 2013. 
  33. ^ "Coyle insists he's the man to succeed Wigan fans' favourite Martinez at DW Stadium". Daily Mail. 17 June 2013. Retrieved 20 June 2013. 
  34. ^ "Wigan sack manager Owen Coyle after fans revolt over third home loss in a week". Daily Mirror. 1 December 2013. Retrieved 2 December 2013. 
  35. ^ "Coyle leaves Wigan with Holloway favourite to take over as Scot becomes third manager to get the axe in just one day". Daily Mail. 1 December 2013. Retrieved 2 December 2013. 
  36. ^ "Reports: Owen Coyle signs three-year deal with Houston Dynamo". Dynamo Theory. 8 December 2014. Retrieved 8 December 2014. 
  37. ^ "Owen Coyle's managerial career".  
  38. ^
  39. ^ "Owen Coyle 'distraught' after player suffers heart attack". Donegal Daily. 17 March 2012. Retrieved 17 March 2012. Owen, who was born in the 'Little Donegal' area of Glasgow to Donegal parents and who is a frequent visitor to Gaoth Dobhair, accompanied Bolton midfielder Fabrice Muamba to hospital after he collapsed on the pitch during Wanderers’ FA Cup Sixth Round match at Tottenham Hotspur. 
  40. ^ "How Owen Coyle has transformed Bolton". BBC News. Retrieved 16 April 2011. 
  41. ^"Owen Coyle becomes unlikely WWE star",

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