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McGeeney given the boot by Kildare

By John Campbell

Kieran McGeeney's reign as Kildare manager ended the most dramatic circumstances late last night when he failed to gain formal ratification from the county board for another year in charge by just one vote.

McGeeney exited on a 29-28 count at the end of the one of the most tense meetings in the county's history and now becomes the third Ulster manger to leave his post in the wake of Justin McNulty (Laois) and Peter Canavan (Fermanagh).

McGeeney has been in charge for the past six years but during this period Kildare were unable to deliver a Leinster or All Ireland title although they have regularly reached the last eight in the race to 'Sam'.

There is a deep yearning for success in this football-mad county and Kildare regularly attract huge crowds when they participate in major matches.

This year McGeeney was assisted by former Wexford boss Jason Ryan having previously had current Armagh boss Paul Grimley and Louth manager Aidan O'Rourke among his lieutenants.

Prior to last night's meeting it was known that upwards on eighteen clubs were opposed to McGeeney being granted a one-year extension of his tenure.

However, it is thought that some county board officials and a number of established senior players were keen to see him continue.

McGeeney, who captained Armagh to their only All-Ireland title to date in 2002, is still extremely popular in Kildare despite the fact that the team has not enjoyed any real level of success under his management.

In the All-Ireland qualifiers this year Kildare fell to Tyrone after making a strong second half recovery that just fell short when it looked as if they might be on the verge of a big breakthrough.

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