Loyalty to Leitrim key for Moran
MICKEY Moran has revealed that he was hesitant about taking up a third year in charge of the Leitrim senior footballers, but decided to do so out of "loyalty" to the county.
Derry native Moran will be assisted once again by Martin McGowan for the 2011 campaign but he is on the lookout for another back-room team member, as long-term assistant John Morrison has left to pursue other commitments.
"John has commitments outside of the game and couldn't really commit. I was very hesitant myself. The board approached me for continuity's sake. I rang John, tossed it over with him and he gave me his blessing," Moran said.
Moran also took charge of Leitrim's U-21s, who lost to Mayo in the Connacht championship by two points. Roscommon put paid to Leitrim's senior provincial hopes before Moran's team lost to Kildare in the qualifiers.
But the past season proved extremely difficult on and off the field. The tragic death of much-loved Philly McGuinness cast a shadow over Leitrim's season and the team also struggled for top-class floodlit training facilities.
Plans have been unveiled to develop land in Annaduff, but work will not start until later this year.
Moran acknowledged that the death of McGuinness "had an awful impact on the whole county." "Everybody was totally knocked back and felt for the family. He was the most beautiful person you could meet and football was his life," he said.