Mayo to hold trials for over 100 potential players
New manager James Horan says there will be room for new faces ahead of next season
New Mayo manager James Horan has signed a four-year contract. Photo: James Crombie/Inpho
New Mayo manager James Horan has said that he and his coaching staff will hold trials for over 100 potential new players ahead of next year.
The 47-year-old was ratified for a second term in the job on Thursday and spoke to Mayo GAA TV on Saturday about his hopes for the four-year journey he will undertake with the team.
Intercounty trials are rare occasions with Laois one of the few teams currently going through the process. However, Horan says that there will be a chance for new players to earn their place on the Mayo panel shortly.
“We’re organising trials very shortly where we’re looking to have over 100 players involved where everyone will get two games so we can have a look at what’s out there and what potential is there,” he said.
“There are going to be new players. Thanks to the great work done by Mike Solan over the last few years there are younger players and some may make it this year and some over the next few years.”
Mayo were knocked out of the championship in the qualifiers in 2018 with Stephen Rochford’s reign coming to an end shortly afterwards. Horan has recently been coaching Westport but says that he will need to get a pair of football boots before the intercounty season starts.
“I will definitely have to get a pair of boots because I have no boots at the moment,” he said. “I think [the training pitch] is where I can add the greatest benefit.”
When asked about suggestions that former player Ciarán McDonald might be drafted in, Horan was tight-lipped, saying that for the moment he is happy with his staff which also includes Westport businessman Joe Doyle as operations manager.
“Joe Doyle will be doing a lot of the off-field management. [I am] trying to set it up so that we can provide the maximum expertise as a support team for the players.
“For the moment we have what we need to move forward and if, and when needed, we could look to add to the team.”
Mayo get their league campaign underway on Saturday, January 26th against Roscommon and by then could well be supplemented by some new faces if they impress in the trials.