Galway hurler Johnny Glynn links up with New York footballers
Galway hurler Johnny Glynn could get to play in a Connacht Championship after all - as a New York footballer.
Glynn, one of the stars of Galway's advance to an All-Ireland hurling final last year, has been based in the US since a few weeks after their All-Ireland final defeat to Kilkenny.
He is currently training with New York ahead of their Connacht preliminary round clash against Roscommon on Sunday, May 1.
New York manager Justin O'Halloran confirmed that the exiles expect to have Glynn for the game. "He's training away with us, he's a big strong athlete and there is loads of football in him," he said.
Glynn's commitment to New York looks set to preclude him from his involvement with Galway in 2016.
Galway hurling manager Michael Donoghue left the door open for the Ardrahan man's return earlier this month and confirmed that he had spoken to him on a few occasions.
Glynn brought impressive power to Galway during last year's championship, his goal against Cork in the All-Ireland quarter-final being one of his most memorable moments.
He has joined fellow Galwegians Michael Lundy and Johnny Duane who have also linked up with New York.
Lundy, an All-Ireland club winner with Corofin almost 12 months ago, and Duane were both part of the Kevin Walsh's Galway team last year. Duane started the 2-18 to 0-8 victory over New York while Lundy came off the bench.
"They're hard workers and good team-mates," said O'Halloran. "They're great to have around."
O'Halloran, who has taken over from Ian Galvin, can also draw on the services of two former Longford players, Enda Williams and Ronan McIntyre, to strengthen their hand. Williams had retired from inter-county football after last season.
And former Sligo goalkeeper Vinny Cadden is also expected to join up with New York in the coming weeks.
O'Halloran said he had no knowledge of Armagh's Jamie Clarke coming on board with them however.
Armagh manager Kieran McGeeney indicated at the beginning of the year that Clarke would not be part of his squad because of his intention to travel to the US. There has been some speculation that he will return to New York.
Clarke's Crossmaglen Rangers were knocked out of the All-Ireland club championship by Castlebar Mitchels last week.
Still, New York expect to be competitive when Roscommon arrive in two months' time.
"I was a selector and trainer in 2010 when we very nearly beat Galway and we had only 13 men for the second half. This year's team will be stronger than that team," he predicted. "We won't have any challenge games this time (they played Cavan last year). We'll only be playing among ourselves."
New York have lost PJ Banville who has returned to play with Wexford this year.
Meanwhile, Mayo will welcome back a number of experienced players for their trip to Donegal this weekend, a match they must conceivably win to avoid being plunged too deep into Division 1 relegation battle.
Seamus O'Shea, Chris Barrett and Mickey Conroy are all available for selection again, while long-serving goalkeeper David Clarke has also recovered from his latest hamstring injury. Lee Keegan is also available again after sitting out the defeat to Dublin following the bang to the head that he sustained against Cork in the opening round.
Clarke began the 2015 championship as the No 1 choice but sustained an injury during the All-Ireland quarter-final victory over Donegal last August and sat out the rest of the season. Three years ago he suffered an even more serious hamstring injury during the 2013 championship that could have ended his career.
O'Shea (groin), Conroy (shoulder and Achilles) and Chris Barrett (ankle) all sat out the opening two games.
Kevin Keane, who injured a shoulder in the Connacht FL against Roscommon, and Donal Vaughan(hamstring) are likely to miss out while defender Caolan Crowe is doubtful.
Derry boss banned
Derry manager Damian Barton will have to watch the remainder of his team's Allianz League matches from the stands after being given an eight-week touchline suspension by the Ulster Council arising out of incidents during their Dr McKenna Cup final defeat to Tyrone last month.
Barton became involved in a melee which developed after Derry substitute Daniel McKinless kicked the ball from Niall Morgan's tee as the Tyrone goalkeeper went to take a kick-out and was thrown to the ground by Cathal McCarron. Both men were then red-carded by referee Noel Mooney.
Meanwhile, Antrim have hit back at Wexford's accusations of "thuggery" during their recent Division 4 NFL clash, with manager Frank Fitzsimons insisting: "If anything, we need to toughen up. It's a results business so let's hope they're still talking about us on Sunday night."