McGuinness set to reveal his new Donegal management team

Donegal supremo delighted that postponement of club championship will facilitate proper preparation of county side

Jim McGuinness' has recruited a new Donegal management team for 2014 and will reveal the chosen ones in the coming days. "I would know myself there's only so many people that can fit that category," said McGuinness, who refused to comment on the decision-making process that saw Donegal part ways with Rory Gallagher, Maxi Curran and Francie Friel.

“I’d know myself what I would need within the set-up and what’s required. I’ve spoken to a few people and we’ll be making an announcement in the next couple of days.”

Donegal failed to defend both their Ulster and All-Ireland titles in 2013 but the Celtic FC sports psychologist provided a timeline to the failure. “We started on the 26th of May and between then and Mayo beating us we played nine championship games, club and county.

Last year we were getting a three- and a four-week build-up to every game. We were building and preparing night after night and you just felt you were moving towards a big game.


“Whereas this year we were asking 100 per cent of the boys on the 26th of May, then the following week the club manager [wanted 100 per cent], the following week the club manager, the week after that they had a free weekend, the week after that the Ulster semi-final, the week after that club championship again, week after that club championship, weekend off again, Ulster final, Laois, Mayo.

"So it's difficult to be at that level that many times in that short space of time and then we picked up a lot of injuries along the way. We picked up nine injuries in the four club championship matches, on top of the injuries we picked up at county level.

Finish off
"Those factors were very important to me when I was going back to finish off my final year in this term. I wanted to make sure that A) the players were prepared to go back and give it a big push and B) the way would be clear to prepare the team to the level I feel is required and we've got that with the clubs voting on it. We were the only county in Ulster last year that played club championship during the season . . . .

“So those few things were important in terms of squaring away before I decided to go back and I am happy that they have been squared away.”

He also confirmed that Ryan Bradley and Ross Wherity have emigrated to Dubai and New York respectively.

Gavin Cummiskey

Gavin Cummiskey

Gavin Cummiskey is The Irish Times' Soccer Correspondent