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Give players say on new Derry manager: Lynn

By Declan Bogue

Derry veteran Enda Lynn has stated his preference that some county players should have an involvement in the appointment of Brian McIver's successor.

McIver stepped down from the Derry job after three years in charge on Saturday night, following defeat to Galway in the All-Ireland qualifiers. He cited frustration with referees in general as one of the main reasons.

Derry county board Chairman Brian Smith will now begin the hunt for a new manager after the former Donegal and Ballinderry boss unexpectedly quit.

One of the most experienced figures in the Oak Leaf county squad, Lynn feels that the players should have a role in identifying the best man for the job.

"I would be a firm believer of letting players give an option of managers who they feel could push them that wee bit further. I would favour that.

"A lot of players could choose a shortlist and let the county board decide who is the right man for the job after that," he told the Belfast Telegraph.

Lynn expressed his disappointment with the end of a season characterised by player defections and an inability on the part of others to commit to the squad.

He said: "I am sort of shocked, and then I am not.

"Before Brian came in there three years ago, he said he would be in for five years. I suppose after the third year, some players weren't committing to him, there were boys leaving for America and so on. It really didn't help him.

"I felt that if he went in to a fourth year it would have been the same old story. It messed up the camp a bit as well."

Referring to the cases of Terence O'Brien, Conor McAtamney and Emmet Bradley, who left the panel between the win over Wexford and the loss to Galway last weekend to play football in America for the summer, Lynn observed: "It was fringe players who weren't really making the team and boys who were coming on who left. It's hard for them to stick around if they aren't getting game time. If they were offered a bit of money to play a bit of football in America, that would be a good option.

"I don't see why players wouldn't be honoured to go and play for the county, though."

The Greenlough man feels that Derry have the talent within the county to mount a credible challenge for honours, saying: "I have been about the county set-up for a number of years and Derry have the players to at least win an Ulster Championship."

As for any potential new managers, he warned of the enormity of the job, commenting: "It's a big step up. I had a lot of time for Brian and I thought he did an awful lot for Derry. We won a Division Two title and got to a National League final as well.

"He just never got the rub of the green. It will be a big job for new management to come in and start off afresh."

Belfast Telegraph


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