It was thought that Sean Boylan would be the Meath senior football manager this morning but the fiasco that has turned into farce and now sees Seamus McEnaney staying in charge despite over sixty per cent vote of no confidence in him from county board officials.
A motion to remove the current Meath senior football manager was backed by a vote of 43 to 31 by the committee members. This however, did not exceed the two thirds majority rule to overthrow him from his position. County Chairman Barney Allen expressed he had no animosity with McEnaney and that this decision was brought on by recent results. In particular their recent loss to Louth in the National Football League Division 2 encounter. This result relegated the Royal County to division 3.
Allen expressed that McEnaney will continue to receive their backing and hopes the same support will come from all the clubs in Meath. Local GAA club representatives expressed their anger over the recent results of the senior side that brought Allen to act on the matter. A minority of county board officials still believe McEnaney can bring success to Meath.
It will be a very difficult campaign ahead and football experts will be wondering how he will obtain success with such low support from the county board. He has a huge match against Wicklow in six weeks time and he will undoubtedly be under serious pressure unless he can reach a Leinster final which would be a mark of success for Meath.
Former Meath star Evan Kelly believes the players decision to back their manager will unite the Royal County. The motion to replace Banty could have caused more damage than good when the players themselves voted to keep him, and pledged their allegiance to the Monaghan Native. The majority of votes backing the current manager came from the players themselves, in an almost act of defiance against the board members. After all these are the individuals who have a close relationship with McEnaney and by expressing their power last night showed they are confident in his managerial skills.
Kelly, who won All-Ireland titles with Meath in 1996 and 1999 under Sean Boylan, firmly believes that the four time All-Ireland winning manager would be more than capable of guiding Meath out of their current poor form spell. However, there is an underlying issue which needs to be addressed in Meath and this includes the fact that over the last eight seasons the Meath under 21 team have exited the Leinster Championship on five occasions and have only won two provincial minor titles since 1993.
Boylan is set to undergo a new role as a development officer in Meath, and his expertise may improve these current statistics in the years to come. For the moment however, it will be up to the Meath players to show the county board officials that McEnaney is the man for the job. It seems the players and coaching staff are united but it will be results and performances that the county board will be hoping for and not sympathy for the manager.