CONOR Laverty may be set to head a new Down management team in which Jim McGuinness would make a shock return to inter-county football.
The Irish News understands that negotiations between the parties are close to a conclusion and that McGuinness could be set to come in for his first involvement with a county team since leaving Donegal at the end of 2014.
Laverty, who won another county title as a player at the weekend, had originally been ratified for another spell as the county’s U20 manager a while back but is set to step up to take the senior job.
It’s understood that Marty Clarke, who worked with Laverty on the U20 team that won this year’s Ulster title, will also be part of a high-profile management team to replace Paddy Tally.
McGuinness turned Donegal’s fortunes completely around to guide them to an All-Ireland title in 2012 before reaching a second decider two years later, in which Kerry beat them.
He then departed to concentrate on his day job with Celtic FC, which has led to a career in soccer management that now has him stationed with Derry City’s U19 team.