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Gallagher tipped for Fermanagh after Donegal exit

By Declan Bogue

Following the re-appointment of Jim McGuinness to the Donegal manager's job last Saturday, it has emerged that a number of departures from the backroom team have occurred.

Rory Gallagher, who had been seen as a crucial component of the backroom for his tactical nous and his reading of the game as a selector, has departed the scene along with back-up staff Maxi Curran and Francie Friel.

It was cited yesterday that Gallagher had departed due to work and family commitments, but there is speculation that the working relationship between him and McGuinness came under strain after some remarks made about Mayo manager James Horan prior to their All-Ireland quarter-final defeat.

When asked after that game if Gallagher's comments were excessive, McGuinness answered, "Well, you need to get Rory to answer that question. I can only answer it from my own point of view."

With McGuinness continuing his working life in Glasgow with Celtic, the appointment of a second-in-command that may oversee training during the week will be absolutely crucial.

While Curran was in charge of the under-21s last season, it is not clear he will remain in that role either.

Identifying somebody who can come in and make the transition smooth would seem a tall order from this remove.

The input of Gallagher to training sessions also cannot be underestimated.

Naturally with Gallagher's departure, speculation has already arose as to his chances of being nominated for the vacant Fermanagh manager's role.

However, the closing date for applications is this Friday, September 20 and this may need to be swiftly acted upon if he is to secure a nomination for the post in his native county.

While Gallagher has never hid some differences he has had with members of the Fermanagh county board, such problems are always surmountable in such circumstances.

Belfast Telegraph

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