Where Are They Now: Darren Holloway

by Ashley Houghton

safc.com finds out what the 1999 promotion-winning defender is up to.

Darren Holloway played over 50 games for Sunderland during one of the club’s most successful eras.

The defender was part of Peter Reid’s promotion winning side in 1998-99 before playing a key role in the seventh placed finish in the 1999-00 Premier League season.

And, though Holloway looks back on his time at the Stadium of Light with fond memories, he says most of his time on Wearside is a blur to him.

He said: “I joined straight from school on a YTS [Youth Team Scholarship] before signing my first professional contract with Peter Reid when I was 17.

“I spent over seven years with Sunderland in total and I have so many memories - it’s all a blur with all the promotions we had, I was living my dream.”

Holloway labels team morale as the reasoning behind his success with Sunderland, saying Reid instilled a hard-work ethic into a squad that was full of quality.

“Peter [Reid] got together a team that had good team spirit,” he explained.

“We trained hard and worked hard for each other which built the basis for good results and performances.”

Thirty-five year-old Holloway had to finish his career early due to a knee injury which he still struggles with to this day.

And, since finishing his playing days, he has taken up coaching at local schools and academies.

“I always wanted to give something back to where I was brought up, so I set up an academy at my old school, Willington Parkside, (now Parkside Sports College).

“I’ve made good progress with my coaching, I have done my UEFA ‘B’ badge and I’m now coaching the football scholars at East Durham College.”