Sunday 21 January 2018

Ex-Mayo boss James Horan to make surprise return as hurling coach

James Horan; Sportsfile
James Horan; Sportsfile

Declan Rooney

Former Mayo boss James Horan is poised for a return to management — as coach to a club hurling side.

Horan is being lined up as part of the management team to take charge of Galway side Turloughmore for 2017.

Horan is understood to have accepted a coaching role with the north Galway side, but he will have to wait until Sunday to see if they will be taking charge of Turloughmore, a club which won six county titles in a row in the sixties but are without a crown since winning their eighth in 1985.

Horan (44), who led Mayo to two All-Ireland finals in his four-year stint as football manager, is part of the backroom team being lined up by John Hession and former Galway dual player Barry Cullinane.

The club AGM next Sunday is expected to appoint the successful U-21 management duo to take over the seniors – a role they took on midway through this season – and at that point Horan can then take up his position.

It is understood that the Ballintubber man has been lined up for a key strength and conditioning role, as well as an advisory and coaching position.

Turloughmore PRO Paul Dullaghan said Horan has links to the club, although the management team cannot be appointed until the club AGM has their say.

“James is familiar with the club and is a good friend of the club. There is a connection there through a couple of lads.

“We haven’t gone through our AGM at all yet. That’s where our managers and selectors will be selected and that’s next Sunday.”

It will be Horan’s first foray into hurling, where he will get to coach players like double All Star Daithí Burke, Ronan Burke and Fergal Moore.

Under Horan’s management, Mayo won four Connacht titles in a row, and since he vacated the job in 2014, the county reached the All-Ireland semi-final in 2015 and lost this year’s final to Dublin after a replay.

As a club manager Horan led Ballintubber to their first Mayo senior title in 2010, while he also won three Connacht titles and two All Stars during his senior inter-county career.

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