A star-studded potential new management team has emerged as speculation over the future direction of the Kerry senior footballers reaches fever pitch.
According to reports today in the Kingdom, former All-Ireland winning defender Stephen Stack is heading up a prospective managerial ticket that contains a ‘who’s who’ of Kerry greats from different eras.
Reportedly joining Stack would be Mickey Ned O’Sullivan, Donie Buckley, Séamus Moynihan and Dara Ó Cinnéide.
A sub-committee of the county board is currently going through the process of interviewing candidates for a high-profile role that is now vacant following the completion of Peter Keane’s three-year term.
For now, Keane remains in the race and so too does Jack O’Connor, who has steered Kerry to three All-Ireland SFC titles during his previous two spells in the hotseat.
Yet, even as Kieran Donaghy’s name was today linked with inclusion in O’Connor’s coaching ticket, a third heavyweight rival has been touted.
Radio Kerry was today reporting that this team would be headed up by Stack, the Listowel Emmets clubman who won Celtic Crosses with Kerry in 1986 and ’97, the latter as a corner-back starter.
Stack has previously managed Austin Stacks of Tralee to a Munster club title in 2014. His touted backroom team would include O’Sullivan (the veteran former Kerry and Limerick boss); renowned coach Buckley (who has worked with several regimes in Mayo and Kerry, and is now playing a pivotal role with Monaghan); as well as two playing heroes from the ‘90s and noughties, Moynihan and Ó Cinnéide.
Meanwhile, it’s reported that the strength and conditioning team would include Kerry-based Joe O’Connor (who has achieved great success with the Clare hurlers and his native Limerick) and former Kerry star Aidan O’Mahony.
Against this backdrop, Donaghy’s name has now been floated in connection with O’Connor’s candidacy. The 2006 Footballer of the Year was handed his Kerry debut by O’Connor during his first spell in charge and only retired from inter-county football in 2018.
Donaghy, 38, was a forwards coach for Kieran McGeaney’s Armagh this year while he has also worked as a pundit for Sky Sports.