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Rory Gallagher considering Fermanagh return as Ernemen search for new manager

 

By Declan Bogue

A sensational return to Fermanagh could be on the cards for Rory Gallagher - who stepped down as Donegal manager just five weeks ago.

Gallagher has already met with Erne officials with a view to becoming Pete McGrath's successor, after the Fermanagh players held a meeting in which it emerged a significant proportion were unwilling to continue in 2018 under the former two-time All-Ireland winner.

A five-man selection committee to appoint the next manager was established under county chairman Greg Kelly, including county secretary Tom Boyle, assistant treasurer Sean Burns, former county footballer Tom Brewster and Martin McAviney, former president of the Ulster Council. They were charged with the task of sourcing and appointing the new manager who will start life in National League Division Three in 2018.

A number of candidates had been approached for their availability, including ex-Tyrone player Collie Holmes who was the manager of the Red Hands' All-Ireland triumph at under-17 level last weekend. Having spent the last number of years immersed in the Tyrone underage academy system, Holmes is understood to not been interested in switching counties and did not interview.

The Belfast Telegraph understands that an approach to Armagh 2002 All-Ireland winner Paddy McKeever - who managed Teemore Shamrocks in the county for a couple of seasons - was also attempted, but it was knocked back.

McKeever is just after spending his first season as county selector, reunited with his former team-mate Kieran McGeeney and having made progress of sorts in Championship football this summer, will be keen to remain with the Armagh project.

However, it is believed that while Gallagher had not been considering managing another county after his spell in charge of Donegal, he is intrigued by the prospect of returning to take charge of his native county, whom he last played for in 2010, becoming assistant manager in Donegal under Jim McGuinness later that winter.

Meanwhile, Johnny Glynn has reflected on an eventful summer crossing the Atlantic to combine working in New York and hurling - and winning an All-Ireland - with Galway.

Glynn has worked for Topline Dry Wall over the last two years, even appearing last year for New York in the Connacht football Championship.

Speaking at the champions' City West Hotel, Glynn said, "I came back about four weeks before the semi-final, went back to New York for a few days after, then back here for the last four weeks. The lifestyle is good, I suppose. It's good craic, but you try to fill the gap with hurling, that gap was filled yesterday and it's awful hard not to be involved in something like that, no matter what lifestyle is abroad. That was something special."

All the private hurling sessions he put in Van Cartlandt Park and Randall's Island paid off, he agreed.

"To be honest it wasn't really a sacrifice. It's easily done.

"It's probably more hassle driving from Cork to Belfast, if you think of it that way.

"It's only a few hours flight into Shannon, and my house is only 20 minutes from there. My dad (Martin) is always there to pick me up and we'll have an oul chat."

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