Monday 19 March 2018

Rochford gets Mayo approval for three-year term in charge

Stephen Rochford: New Mayo boss
Stephen Rochford: New Mayo boss
Colm Keys

Colm Keys

Stephen Rochford was ratified for a three-year term as Mayo football manager at a county board meeting last night.

The former Crossmolina All-Ireland club winner, the first man to match that achievement as a manager with a different club, officially fills the last existing managerial inter-county football vacancy.

Change has already taken place in Derry, Down, Longford, Laois, Kildare, Roscommon Cork and Tipperary since the summertime.

Rochford's appointment - which will be reviewed annually - has been known for the last month since he emerged as the only nomination after joint managers, Pat Holmes and Noel Connelly, stepped down in early October on the back of a player heave.

Rochford will have Donie Buckley and Barry Solan, two key components of the previous management, involved with former Crossmaglen All-Ireland club-winning player and manager Tony McEntee also on board.

Former Limerick manager Maurice Horan will be involved in statistics and analysis while former Mayo underage player Sean Carey will also be a selector. Dr Sean Moffatt will head up the medical team, with Caroline Brosnihan as dietician.

Carlow can expect to have influential midfielder Brendan Murphy back in action in 2016 after his return from the US. Murphy departed the squad after the league and went to the US in search of work.

But he has come back and is expected to enrol in the Garda Training College in Templemore in the near future, making a resumption of inter-county duty likely.

Carlow selector Tommy Wogan said Murphy - who missed 2014 as he opted out to prepare for a tour of duty in the Lebanon with the Defence Forces that didn't subsequently materialise - would be back and they are looking forward to having the former AFL recruit involved again.

Westmeath's former All-Star goalkeeper Gary Connaughton won't be involved with the senior footballers in 2016.

Connaughton has been replaced as a selector by Emmet McDonnell, the former Offaly manager, and Westmeath manager Tom Cribbin has confirmed that he won't be involved in a playing capacity either.

"He's concentrating on a new job. I respect that. "He knows he'll be welcome back if his situation changes," said Cribbin.

Irish Independent

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