Mayo offer Horan two-year extension to current term
MAYO GAA chiefs moved to quell fears over James Horan's future as the county's senior football manager by offering him a two-year extension on his current term.
Horan has one year left to run of a three-year stint and there were some suggestions that he would step aside if certain "logistical" issues concerning training facilities and accommodation on match days in Dublin weren't resolved to his satisfaction.
However, Mayo denied any unrest last night and, following a "very productive meeting", an extension of Horan's deal was recommended. That proposal will go before next Monday night's county board meeting for ratification.
The statement from the county board read: "The Mayo senior team, under the management of James Horan, have made tremendous progress in the last two years.
"Mayo County Board are delighted to have a manager of the calibre of James Horan and remain extremely confident that this team will realise their ultimate goal in the very near future..."
"Despite UNCONFIRMED and UNWARRANTED reports earlier this week, the Mayo manager and Mayo County Board have always had and will continue to have a very good working relationship. They are committed to ensuring that the Mayo senior footballers receive the best available resources and facilities in order to help them fulfil their full potential."
Kilkenny duo lash out over football exile
KILKENNY senior footballers Paul Donnelly and JJ Grace have reacted with shock to the county board's decision to withdraw the team from next year's Allianz League.
Grace, the team's GPA representative last year, described the move as a "kick in the b****," while Donnelly claimed it was a retrograde step. Donnelly and Grace have also claimed that the Kilkenny players were not consulted before Noreside top brass revealed their plans at a county board meeting last Monday night.
Kilkenny have also pulled out of next year's Leinster junior and U-21 football championships. The Cats will instead play in a new British championship alongside teams from London and other parts of England and Scotland.
The competition will be played on a round-robin basis, with entry to the All-Ireland junior football championship on offer for the winners.
Donnelly (28) cited Tipperary as an example of what can be achieved with proper underage structures in place. "Like Kilkenny, Tipperary is a traditional hurling county, but investment in football has reaped handsome rewards in recent years, with the Premier County winning the 2011 All-Ireland MFC."