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No Surprise: Holly moves up from assistant coach to Sky Blue FC head coach

After three months of no news, Sky Blue FC promotes Christy Holly to head coach two days before NWSL Draft.

Sky Blue Photo/Robyn McNeil

It took just about three months but the guy who will be running the Sky Blue on the field as of today is the same guy who has been making the personnel decisions all along.

After months of no news, Sky Blue FC named Christy Holly the head coach yesterday - less than 48 hours before the National Women's Soccer League (NWSL) 2016 college draft in Baltimore. Once again, the draft will be held in conjunction with the annual National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) conference.

According to Tony Novo, the club's president and general manager, Holly will lead the Sky Blue at the draft.

The announcement came after months of speculation since former coach Jim Gabarra left for Washington Spirit in October. Holly, who finished his first year as an assistant coach with Sky Blue FC, has been handling the personnel duties for the team since Gabarra's departure.

There had been rumors that two other potential coaches had originally turned down the post. But Sky Blue FC owners and staff said that Holly was the lone person the job was offered to.

"We are thrilled to announce the promotion of Christy Holly to head coach of Sky Blue FC,” said team co-owner Steven Temares. “Christy’s character, leadership and experience with our team and the league, together with his inter-personal skills and training capabilities, make him the right coach for Sky Blue FC."

Holly said he was anxious to officially begin the work with Sky Blue FC, a squad that has missed the playoffs the last two years and has made hardly any off-season personnel changes.

“I am excited to lead this exceptional group of players, on and off the field,” Holly remarked. “Through my years with Sky Blue FC, I have come to know our current players and the amazing talent and heart they possess. As a team, we will be looking to build on this tremendous foundation and supplement it with new talent to help us reach the next level."

The Holly Profile:

Holly came to New Jersey with more than 15 years of coaching experience across various levels in both the United States and Ireland. He served for two years as an assistant coach at Georgian Court University  in Lakewood, as well as previously coaching in the same capacity for the Sky Blue FC Reserve Team.

Holly, who received his Bachelors Degree in Sports Science with Honors in Sports Psychology, also worked as a coach and evaluator for the Bayern Munich National ID program, which is run in conjunction with Global Premier Soccer (GPS). Additionally, the Derry, Ireland, native played collegiately for John Moores University in Liverpool before joining the professional ranks.