Galway under-21 manager Anthony Cunningham looks set to make the step up to senior manager after John McIntyre announced his decision to stand down from the post yesterday.
McIntyre’s tenure looked set to end when his ability to get the best out of the panel was questioned at a recent county board meeting and McIntyre has admitted that the performances against Dublin and quarter-final loss to Waterford were sub-par.
“In my heart of hearts, I knew the game was up when we fell so disappointingly to Waterford”, he said.
“It was a dispiriting defeat and there are no excuses.”
Cunningham on the other hand enjoyed a very successful year with the under-21s, culminating in a resounding 3-14 to 1-10 win over Dublin in the All-Ireland final last weekend.
Cunningham has said though that if he gets the job he won’t consign McIntyre’s squad to the scrapheap.
“The raw materials are there and the existing players can contribute enormously to Galway”, he said.
“We saw last Sunday that there is good talent coming through, the challenge is now to transfer that to the senior team”, he said.
Though Cuningham is the bookies favourite to land the job, the man who ended McIntyre’s reign Waterford manager Davy Fitzgerald has also been tipped for the position.
Fitzgerald stood down from The Déise earlier this month and his experience and talents are unlikely be rested for too long.
Michael Donoghue stood down as manager of Clarenbridge in April after leading the Galway club champions to their first All-Ireland championship.
Donoghue too has experience of the inter-county set-up having been involved in the Galway under-21s 2005 All-Ireland title.
Limerick manager Dónal O’Grady has also been named as a possible successor to McIntyre, O’Grady returned to inter-county management last year after he surprised many when he resigned immediately after the 2004 All-Ireland victory over Kilkenny.
Betting from http://www.johnmulholland.com/
Anthony Cunningham 8/11
Davy Fitzgerald Evs
Mícheal Donoghue 5/2
Donal O Grady 7/2
Johnny Kelly 6/1
Mattie Murphy 5/1
Liam Sheedy 14/1
Conor Hayes 16/1
Joe Cooney 20/1
Mattie Kenny 20/1
Joe Dooley 25/1
Noel Finn 33/1
Michael Bond 33/1
Jimmy Heverin 33/1
Vincenty Mullins 33/1