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25 Jun 2022

County manager issue needs to be sorted before start of club championship says McEniff

Former All-Ireland winning manager says there is no need to panic

County manager issue needs to be sorted before start of club championship  says McEniff

Donegal need  to have their senior team management for 2023 sorted before the club championship in August in order for new blood to be sourced for the county panel.

That is the view of former All-Ireland winning manager, Brian McEniff, writing in his column in this week’s Donegal Democrat.

Donegal bowed out of the championship on Sunday against an impressive Armagh side and, as always happens, the focus turns to the management and the future.

Declan Bonner has completed five years in charge and has one year left on his term. He did not speak to the press after Sunday's game and was not available this week. Neither was there any comment from the Donegal chairman, Mick McGrath.

It is expected and Declan Bonner will take some time to reflect on Sunday's defeat and only right that he be given that time.

In his column, Brian McEniff, feels there should not be any panic, although he does feel that the management issue should be sorted before the middle of August when the Donegal club championships take centre stage.

"As for the future, the important thing is not to panic. We have to take time to reflect. Hasty decisions can be regretted, McEniff says.

"Some players need plenty of rest; others need a lot of football.

"Declan (Bonner)  still has year to do. If he is staying on he has to freshen up the whole backroom table. There are good people out there.  Rory Kavanagh has been involved with St Eunan's, Karl Lacey has been there before; Eamonn McGee has been there at U-20 level. These are people who could get involved.

"It's a big job. Gaelic football is being run professionally and you're expected to be a professional manager. It is very easy to come down on people like a ton of bricks.

"We have to get a few more players in to freshen things up.

"We have two months for Declan to make up his mind.   Whatever happens we need to have the decision made and a  manager should be in place for club championship.

"Declan has given sterling service to the county, a wealth of experience.  He has five years done and that is a brave term, getting to four Ulster finals. And overall we have had lots of joy over the last 12 years and I hope we can look forward to good times again," says McEniff.

The Democrat has learned that Stephen Rochford, the former Mayo manager who joined the Donegal management team at the end of 2018, shook hands with all the Donegal players in the dressing room on Sunday sending out a strong signal that it was his last involvement with the county.

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