Monaghan bring back McEneaney
Published 05/10/2010 | 05:00
Eamonn McEneaney is back as manager of Monaghan after his name was accepted for ratification at a county board meeting last night.
McEneaney's appointment brings to an end a sometimes acrimonious process which saw the outgoing manager Seamus McEnaney depart after six years in charge.
The Monaghan management committee had proposed in August that McEnaney should be allowed to continue for a further three years.
But five days later, delegates to a county board meeting voted not to accept that proposal and instead open up the process to other potential candidates.
McEnaney withdrew his candidacy some days later despite strong support for him to continue from the Monaghan players who, under his stewardship, had retained Division 1 status earlier this year.
Eamonn McEneaney previously had a spell as Monaghan manager in a joint capacity with former GAA president Sean McCague back in the 1990s.
He spent four years with Louth from 2006 to 2009, during which time the Wee County picked up a Division 2 league title, an O'Byrne Cup, the Tommy Murphy Cup and a Leinster junior title. His time in charge of Louth was generally seen as progressive.
He was one of Monaghan's foremost players when they won two Ulster titles in four years.
McEneaney will have to address the disappointment among some players at the departure of McEnaney and his management team. The players had issued a statement after the decision to open up the process giving their backing to the outgoing management.
Later, county board chairman Paul Curran was criticised by long-serving player JP Mone after remarks he made suggesting the time was right for change at playing level.
McEneaney will have two former players Stephen McGinnity and Declan Smyth as his selectors. Both featured prominently as forwards for Monaghan in the 1990s. The team trainer will be Colin O'Hare.
Meanwhile, Galway may have a new manager within days, with Peter Warren -- former selector to John O'Mahony -- emerging as a stronger candidate than had been thought. Interviews were conducted last week and it is believed more will take place with some of the same candidates in the coming days.
Galway Football Board officials are in a bind over what route to take. Tomas O Flaharta has stayed in the race but there is a growing reluctance to go 'outside' the county for the fourth time out of the last five appointments.
O'Mahony, Peter Ford and Joe Kernan have all been charge since 1998. Only Liam Sammon has come from within Galway.
Current minor manager Gerry Fahy is also felt to be losing ground and that has presented the possibility of Warren becoming a compromise candidate.
Warren served as a selector with O'Mahony throughout his six years in charge from 1998 to 2004. The fourth candidate is Matt Duggan from the Annaghdown club.
Anthony Tohill will finalise his international rules squad for the forthcoming Tests with Australia after a final trial in Limerick on Saturday. The squad will be announced early next week.
The extended squad will convene in Limerick on Thursday for three days, where it is expected they will be joined by Tadhg Kennelly, due to return home from Australia yesterday. Kennelly has committed to playing for Ireland after missing the 2008 Tests in Australia due to surgery.
Another Kerry player, Tommy Walsh, linked up with Tohill's squad in Ashbourne on Friday night and he is expected to make the final cut.
The management will also make a decision on the captaincy over the weekend, with Armagh's Stevie McDonnell emerging as a favourite.
Meanwhile, it looks as if the Kerry captaincy for 2011 is between Colm Cooper and Kieran Donaghy, with Dr Crokes and Austin Stacks contesting the Kerry SFC final.
With divisional sides having dominated the Kerry SFC in recent years, the captaincy issue posed problems when players weren't guaranteed selection on the county team, but that won't be the case with Cooper or Donaghy.