The Northern Irishman has been included in Mourinho’s coaching staff for the 2018/19 campaign and will take control of the first team’s training exercises – the Carlos Quieroz role, if you like.
His success with the Under 18s, who he took to a league title and averaged three goals a game, has not evaded the notice of the club or supporters.
And Boonen, part of that Under 18 side but now a KV Oostende player, was adamant that McKenna would encounter plenty of success.
“When Kieran became the new under-18s manager, he changed everything,” he said. “He is one of the best coaches I ever had.”
“It’s the way he wants to play football and the way we trained and improved. The way we trained was how the opponent played on the Saturday. If you played against West Brom, you trained how they are and focused on their weaknesses.
“He has everything to have a big, big career as a manager in the future.”
There is plenty of fuss about McKenna for a reason. He inherited something of a mess when he joined from Tottenham Hotspur – with whom he blooded several talented youngsters – and won the title in his first season, bringing a swashbuckling, confident style of attacking to the table.
He is known for his attention to detail, refining every last aspect, alongside putting out unpredictable training sessions, which supporters will hope serves as a kind of antidote to Jose Mourinho‘s penchant for a more instinctual approach mixed with hard discipline.