GAA Football

Rory Gallagher gets three more years

Rory Gallagher has been given three more years as Donegal manager
Brendan Crossan & Gerry McLaughlin

DONEGAL boss Rory Gallagher has been appointed for a further three more years with a “review for a fourth”, confirmed county PRO Ed Byrne.

The former Fermanagh player had intimated his desire for a four-year deal, but club delegates in Ballybofey overwhelmingly agreed a three-year term on Monday night. Even though it falls slightly short of what Gallagher wanted, Byrne fully expects the county’s senior manager to be very happy with Monday night’s outcome.

“There was a lot of discussion among the clubs, clubs with county players and members of the executive and the view of the committee was to endorse this,” Byrne said.

“From today, Rory has three more years, with a review of a fourth. The standard around the country is ‘three and one’. That was the only one put forward."

Byrne added: “The clubs overwhelmingly endorsed it. I’d say Rory will be absolutely thrilled. It’s a pity he wasn’t here tonight to see the endorsement. It was a huge endorsement.”

Prior to Monday night’s county committee meeting, several high-profile Donegal players, including Ryan McHugh and Michael Murphy, voiced their support for Gallagher to get a longer-term contract. Kilcar clubman McHugh said Gallagher should be given “as long as he wants” in the Donegal job, while Murphy commented: “It is important now that a fairly steady platform develops over the next three to four years and Rory, knowing these players at U21 level, it would be right for him to drive that on for two, three, four years.

"As players, we would be keen for that to happen,” Murphy added.

Following Jim McGuinness’ departure at the end of 2014, former assistant Gallagher returned to take the reins. They lost back-to-back Ulster finals to Monaghan and Tyrone during his two-year stint in charge and, this year, they lost an All-Ireland quarter-final to Dublin.

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