DUBLIN midfielder Eamon Fennell is facing potential inter-county isolation again in 2011 – if his latest transfer is not resolved successfully next month.
For the fourth successive year, Fennell is seeking a move away from his home club O’Toole’s, once again to St Vincent’s, where he has sought to go on two of his previous applications.
His move was blocked by Dublin County Board on the casting vote of then chairman Gerry Harrington last year. The Disputes Resolution Authority then returned the case to the Dublin board, who upheld their original decision emphatically.
In the meantime O’Toole’s waived their right to prevent Fennell from playing with Dublin, though he refused to play with them. Fennell’s request is up again and O’Toole’s or the County Board are unlikely to yield from their positions.
It is understood that O’Toole’s may even take a much more hardline attitude if he continues to refuse to play for them. Dublin did not play Fennell in 2009, once it was apparent he did not have O’Toole’s blessing. Fennell is recovering from a hip injury and may not see action again until April.
He has became club football’s transfer cause celebre over the last three years, but made an early impact in the National League last season that suggested better things were to come.
Fennell had a meeting with O’Toole’s officials prior to Christmas – in the company of his solicitor – which he described as the most cordial they have had.
O’Toole’s unwillingness to yield is based on the County Board’s stance that prevents unsigned transfers from being sanctioned.
The impasse has led to frustration for the player, who feels a move to what he believes is a more football-orientated club will improve his game. Fennell has remained within the extended Dublin squad and has been undergoing rehabilitation work.