Tuesday 20 August 2019

Derry manager Damian McErlain steps down after two seasons in charge

Damien McErlain has stepped down as Derry manager. Photo by Matt Browne/Sportsfile
Damien McErlain has stepped down as Derry manager. Photo by Matt Browne/Sportsfile

Frank Roche

DAMIAN McERLAIN has stepped down from the Derry football hot seat after two seasons.

McErlain had previously guided Derry to an All-Ireland minor final in 2017, where they succumbed to a David Clifford-inspired Kerry, but he endured fluctuating fortunes at the senior helm.

He now becomes the fifth county football manager to depart this summer, following on from Paul McLoughlin (Wexford), Liam Kearns (Tipperary), Malachy O’Rourke (Monaghan) and, earlier this week, Cian O’Neill (Kildare).

The Derry county board confirmed his departure today.

"After speaking with Damian McErlain, Derry GAA confirms that we have reluctantly accepted his resignation as Derry senior football manager," a statement outlined.

"We would like to sincerely thank Damian, his management and backroom teams, and all our players for their efforts over the past two years." 

“Damian has been involved with Derry minor and senior football teams for the past five years and has been a central figure in helping to develop a new generation of Derry footballers,” the statement added.

"We would like wish Damian, his wife Sinead and family every health and happiness going forward. The process of appointing a new senior football management will commence over the coming days and weeks."

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McErlain suffered relegation to the basement division of the Allianz League in his maiden campaign, but his improving outfit bounced back with promotion and a Division 4 title last spring.

However, he managed just one championship victory in five attempts - the demolition of Wexford in a first round qualifier last month. Otherwise, his Derry team lost to Donegal and Kildare last year, then Tyrone and ultimately Laois this season.

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