Monday 5 December 2016

Noel Connelly and Pat Holmes get ready to dig in against Mayo player heave

Published 30/09/2015 | 02:30

Joint Mayo managers Pat Holmes, left, and Noel Connelly
Joint Mayo managers Pat Holmes, left, and Noel Connelly

Mayo's joint senior football managers Pat Holmes and Noel Connelly will not be stepping down in the immediate aftermath of a vote of no confidence in them by their players.

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The outcome of the vote, which was conducted on the weekend of the All-Ireland final, was conveyed to the management on Sunday evening and is thought to have been 27-7.

At least one of their highest profile players is thought to be among the seven who supported the outgoing management.

The rumbling of discontent has been ongoing since Mayo's exit to Dublin in an All-Ireland semi-final just over three weeks ago. But county board officials were still insisting that until the players relayed the feelings of the majority to the management duo they had no knowledge of it.

A scheduled review meeting involving the management, players' representatives Keith Higgins and Cillian O'Connor and Mayo County Board representatives is to take place tomorrow night when more light may be shed on the specific reasons why the players have reached this conclusion after just one year.

Read more: Mayo players have no right to blame others for their own failures

Read more: Player uprising will have an inevitable ending

It is not clear if the Mayo players would go as far as suggesting an alternative but James Horan, who stepped down after four years in charge last year, would be an obvious choice to step in if a vacancy arose and his circumstances were right.

But Horan's relationship with Mayo County Board has been fractured and his parting shot last year focused on resourcing the team and how people didn't always work together for the betterment of Mayo football.

It is believed that the players don't feel that the Holmes/Connelly axis are sufficiently equipped to bring improvement despite results and performances being similar to 2014.

There has been criticism of the players for not waiting to engage in a process of negotiation with the board and management.

In another development, John Maughan was in discussions with the Mayo board last night with a view to taking over the U-21s.

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