Thursday 26 April 2018

New manager Bonner promises to change 'one-dimensional' Donegal

Donegal manager Declan Bonner Photo: Sportsfile
Donegal manager Declan Bonner Photo: Sportsfile

Chris McNulty

Declan Bonner says he plans to change a 'one-dimensional' Donegal to stay competitive next year. Bonner was last night installed as the new Donegal manager, the 1992 All-Ireland winner returning to the role for a second time.

The Lettermacaward man has been given a three-year term to take him to the end of the 2020 season.

Last month, Rory Gallagher - who has since been appointed as Fermanagh manager - stepped down following a meek performance in a 4-17 to 0-14 qualifier defeat by Galway.

"We have to expand and we have to change the way we play," Bonner said.

"A lot of things will have to change. We have taken a step or two back in the last couple of seasons and we have to look at that.

"We have to adapt. We have become too one-dimensional and too predictable. That will take work on the training field."

Bonner, who previously held the position from 1997 to 2000, has most recently been Donegal's U-21 manager.

Bonner said: "It is an honour to be back as Donegal manager.

"It is a big job and a big position. We have a lot of work to do.

"It is a 24/7 job but I am prepared to give that commitment. That is what it takes.

"I hear the word 'transition' mentioned. That is fair enough, but I would hope that we will be very competitive.

"A number of experienced players will come back into the fold and others who are performing well will get an opportunity. The future of Donegal is bright."

Bonner has confirmed Paul McGonigle - who was a selector under Jim McGuinness in 2014 - as his number two.

Bonner said: "I have more or less the team finalised. Just a few bits and pieces need to be tied up. We have a very professional back-room team put together."

Three candidates - Bonner, Cathal Corey and Sean Paul Barrett - were interviewed by the selection panel for a third time this week.

Irish Independent

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