Sunday 25 February 2018

McGuinness, Horan prove value of vibrant new bosses

Martin Breheny

Martin Breheny

THE first year can often be the most opportune time to strike for new managers, with Jim McGuinness (Donegal) and James Horan (Mayo) the latest to support that theory.

Donegal's turnaround from the dispirited, uninterested outfit that was hit for 2-14 by Armagh in last year's qualifiers to the superbly-organised force that won promotion to Division 1, took the Ulster title and is now in the All-Ireland semi-final has been remarkable.

As for Mayo, they lost to Sligo and Longford last year; now they're capable of dethroning All-Ireland champions.

And how about this? Donegal have conceded an average of 0-9 (excluding last Saturday's extra-time) per game in five championship wins, while Mayo have conceded the incredibly low total of 0-4 (I wonder has it ever been done before?) in the second half against Galway, Roscommon and Cork.

That's an average of one point every 26mins 15secs.

Who said that midfielders (McGuinness) or forwards (Horan) don't know how to set up a defence?

Irish Independent

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