Poll: who should be appointed the next Mayo manager?

Mayo bainisteoir

Okay, time is pushing on – we’re almost midway through October and so filling the vacancy for the position of Mayo senior football manager is becoming an increasingly urgent issue to sort. This Thursday evening the draw for next year’s provincial championships will be made and so the sooner we get the new manager in place to start the planning that needs to be done for 2016, the better.

Various names have been touted for the post in the days since Pat Holmes and Noel Connelly stepped down. James Horan and Stephen Rochford are the two who have been mentioned most, with John Maughan another possibility (albeit a fairly distant one) should the County Board opt to appoint someone within the county.

If it’s an external candidate then the names being mentioned most are Jim McGuinness and Jack O’Connor. Another external option – though one who must surely be regarded as one of our own at this stage – would be Donie Buckley.

There are, I know, other names but I’d be more than a little surprised if the man (and surely we will opt for a single man in charge this time round) who is appointed isn’t one of the those names above.

So, then, which one of the six would you like it to be? Time to vote on it.

Who would you like to see become the next Mayo manager?

  • Stephen Rochford (29%, 215 Votes)
  • Jim McGuinness (20%, 149 Votes)
  • James Horan (19%, 139 Votes)
  • John Maughan (16%, 120 Votes)
  • Donie Buckley (9%, 66 Votes)
  • Jack O'Connor (8%, 60 Votes)

Total Voters: 779

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128 thoughts on “Poll: who should be appointed the next Mayo manager?

  1. Well I’d ideally like McGuinness or O’Connor.

    don’t think either have a hope of joining though, the latter not in a million years

    All in all I’d prefer Horan, though, out of the more realistic contenders

    Rochford has done stellar work with Corofin but he’s working with the best squad depth out of every club in the country. Galway’s best player (Brady) at under 21 this year didn’t even see action on Sunday, while Ian Burke- feckin under 21 POTY in 2013 and in the Galway panel earlier this year (!!!)- isn’t even in the starting 15

    It’d be harder lose county titles than win them with that pick. though the AI, of course, was a great achievement. but I’d be quite wary of that appointement

    So, Horan for me really

  2. I really feel that while Rochford has done very well with Corofin and probably is due a shot with Mayo at some stage, the shelf life of this Mayo team is limited. They only have a year or two left to win this thing. Thus, they really need someone proven.
    For that reason, I do think McGuinness would be the man. However, I don’t think the timing will be right for him with Celtic unfortunately. Same as with O’Connor. Just don’t see it happening though I would love to see it. Horan had his flaws. However, he may still be the best option out there over Rochford, Maughan and Buckley. On the basis, that this is a short term thing.

  3. I would like to see James horan, slector/trainer Buckley and Rochford as a selector,
    Rockford to take over the ropes when James horan steps away.
    Transition plan in place from the start. Rochford could even stay partially with corofin until they are out of club championship.

  4. At the end of the day the people on the inside knows what works for them and what does not. I believe there is a strong feeling and belief within this squad about one person. My hope would be that JH will return to lead his team once moreCast your mind back to the week after Limerick 2014. As a Mayo supporter have you ever experienced a Mayo squad express such support for their ex manager that what we all experienced that time. I am referring to much of what appeared in social media. It was really unbelievable. Nobody outside Mayo would like to see him return but he has a lot of support within the county among the grass roots. Personally I will always look at these guys as Horan’s men. My next choice would be Donie. This group are fierce loyal to him. Many of these fine footballers have grown in stature under him. Some of the guys on this list are not even available if we wanted them to take part. I hear what everyone is saying about Stephen Rochford but I question his experience at inter county level. I am sure if he were to put his name forward for U21 or Minor in future he would sail through the process. Get this right it could set us up for 2016 and beyond perhaps. Get it wrong and we could disenfranchise some of the best footballers and people we ever had. Either way I will back the squad for as long as they are there.

  5. Donie Buckley or Stephen Rochford for me. Don’t think we have a hope in hell of getting McGuinness. Don’t want Jack O’Connor. Definitely can’t see John Maughan being a success given his clear contempt for many of the players. I’m a massive fan of James Horan, but feel now is not the time for a return.

  6. Hi, i will go for James Horan to return for a year. There does seem to be sense in Buckley as well given that he has so much respect and hold off on Rochford for a year.
    Horan deserves it though if players and himself agree. I think he will have learned an awful lot about the opposition as well as what is working for Mayo over the last year. It is doubtful that anyone could bring as much for 2016.
    Best wishes to whoever is selected. Ciaran 2.

  7. Anybody thinking that either Jack O’Connor or Jim McGuinness would be available for the Mayo job must be either smoking or drinking something very strong – or maybe both.
    Ideally I would like to see James Horan taking over with Stephen Rochford joining him when Corofin’s campaign ends. I’m not sure however that the Co Board officialdom would want this end result. The nightmare situation would be John Maughan being pushed into the job as Connelly/Holmes were last year. Maughan has in my opinion burned his boats with his comments on the players after Connelly/Holmes resigned.
    I agree that there is some urgency about the appointment as uncertainty about the situation would not help in retaining the services of people like Donie Buckley and Barry Solan or filling other management team vacancies. Also plans for fringe players winter conditioning programmes need to be put in place. It is crazy that the U21 appointment has not yet been made.

  8. HSE Once again thank you for the link. That is a great read. You cannot go wrong with Ed and the Mayo News

  9. I myself am more likely to get this job than Mc Guinness or O’Connor… It’s obvious that the players want Horan back, so if himself and The Co Board can see eye to eye, it’s his job… To think all this could have been avoided if Kevin Mc Stay had been appointed 12 months ago.

  10. Ye are all ignoring the fact that Buckley is gone. Finito. Nothing to do with players, just his time was done.

    Anyways he is a coach that has never managed. They are quite different. Can he build relationships and co-ordinate a full team of support, is he tactically astute, does he know the club game?

    It’s Rochford still for me

  11. Love your thinking Steady!! Apologies now Willie Joe but if John Moghan is anywhere near the senior players I’ll be swearing allegiance to our neighbours Galway

  12. Your welcome PJ, yeah the Mayo News are always spot on with their reporting and articles, very professional, balanced and they do not look for a controversial angle either.

  13. Very decent of Steady to allow Rockford to stay with Corofin partially and take the secondary role while James rides back in to take the glory. Very decent I say.
    Why would Rochford play second fiddle to James Horan when he is a proven All Ireland winner? Rochford for manager with Horan as selector.

  14. -The amount of revisionism and venom directed by some posters at former Mayo managers is way out of order.
    -Facts are that Maugham led us to some famous wins namely Tuam 1999 and has come closer than any other manager to winning San since 1951.
    -Fact is that JOM got us to first AIF in 38 years and won u21 in 1983.
    – Some people keep refering back to Longford 2010, remember when we had other shocking bad results v Westmeath and Leitrim.
    -No queue of people wanting to manage and we wonder why.
    – Rochford not an option as he cannot possibly step up to intercounty while also managing Corofin maybe up until next March.
    -Down to one candidate so back to the future. The players plan A step 2 comes to pass.

  15. Any manager will bring in his own people. It would be wrong in principle to impose certain constraints like preferred coach and selectors. That is the managers job end of. He is the guy that would have to work with his team, so they should be his team. The cobo have done well over the last week lets hope they do not screw up this one.

  16. It’s a difficult poll to answer really. A lot of people have already suggested that either Jimmy McG and Jack O’C would be the preferred candidates to take the helm and we’d be so lucky to have either. But we know too that they are not available and unless that changes we’ve got look elsewhere.
    My vote is for James H to come back and finish the job with what is really his team. He’ll hit the ground running and as I mentioned before he’ll, hopefully, have learned a few things from his year out. The lads will respond positively to it I think.
    The other nominees can have their say in 2-3 years time and we’d be fully be behind them.

    JH- come on back and finish the job ?

  17. Stephen is the only one for me ,,, only because it’s between himself and James but think its time to move on ,, ps o connor or mcguinness were available I would go for either ,,

  18. For what it’s worth I’d go with the proven & breaths of fresh air of O’Connor / McGuinness as I heard rumour of a certain business man willing to pay anything to get the right man.Another title in Kingdom or win another SPL at Celtic is not half as tempting as this challenge should be for ambitious men.
    Another curveball I wonder…Peter Canavan;a winner with a blend of forward knowledge & blanket defenses????

  19. Gerard B, I believe the players want JH but that is only me guessing. Ask the other Ger B as he seems to have inside track. Livenhope you are only allowed support the Galway hurlers but not the footballers if you jump ship..!!!!

  20. you could make a movie on the past five years on mayo football ..the highs and lows and all the drama in between ..on and off the pitch..have no idea who is best placed to bring us our happy ending ..gut says horan but rochford could be a great fit …both in some capacity would be very heartening indeed ..

  21. It seems another candidate has wormed his way into consideration, judging by some of the posts: Rockford? Should he be listed on the voting register Willie Joe?

    McGuinness and O’Connor are of course interesting theoretical candidates. But, the problem for Mayo and outside managers is our location. It’s just too damn difficult, time consuming and expensive to get to Castlebar from a Kerry or North Donegal location. If there was a strong outsider based in Galway or Roscommon or the midlands, broadly speaking, that would be a possibility, but otherwise, it’s problematic.

    What about Moran and Morrison, I hear cries? They did well, but the County Board didn’t like them, expenses tended to rocket and there was a certain sense of dash in, do the stuff and let others clean out the stables afterwards. Galway had the same problems with Joe Kernan, with much much less to show for it. Jack O’Shea? Please.

    Donie Buckley of course travels – Ennis may be just about the limit. The issue there is that, as I understand it, he winters in Florida and doesn’t return until late January.

    James Horan? Will the County Board have him? That is the key question, and all intelligence on this score suggests not.

    Stephen Rochford? Potentially could be running two teams until March. Not good for Mayo, Rochford, or Corofin. Maughan did it of course with Crossmolina.

    Andy Moran? Not on the register, but could be a dark horse, and one about whom I would have positive feelings. The criticism that he would be too close to players to make hard calls is a strong one of course.

    That seems to leave John Maughan…

  22. I went for Donie Buckley but I’d settle for Horan to return I think Rochford one day will make a super Mayo manager one day but would prefer someone with inter county experience

  23. What about Horan as manager and Rockford as selecte r good team was what Aidan o Shea on nobody can seem able to stop him maybe calf nuts just a thought

  24. As a mayo supporter for the last 60 years there is only one past manager I have an issue with that is j o m in his last tenure he took the job for all the wrong reasons cb got rid of a decent man in mickey Moran that 4 years set us back a good bit now you don’t have to be a very smart person to why it happened and I for one won’t be buying joms book I could not take any more of his shite

  25. I voted for James because I just feel that both he and the team will have the energy to try once more to finish this thing.
    I agree that he will have learned so much from the year out, especially about our strengths and weaknesses and the cuteness needed to get over the line. How crucial this cuteness is…
    Obviously when he was managing Mayo he didn’t have this objective perspective, and unfortunately this was to his and the team’s detriment on a number of occasions. I believe he will know this now and will have reflected on this over the year like no man has ever reflected before. Ultimately I haven’t a clue how he would do but it’s my gut feeling on it.

    I’d also be very happy to see Rochford take the reigns. I agree also that this team, like all teams, has a limited shelf-life, and there is an argument to be made for getting Rochford in now and giving him a chance while the talent is there. I think a lot will depend on the pitch that each candidate makes and how much they really want this. Let’s hope the County Board at least gets this bit right this time.

    I’ll say it again, remember the Jim McGuinness-County Board situation in Donegal – all that mattered to him was managing his county and winning Sam with them. He rose above all the crap and the disappointment that had stood in his way previously. No whinging or writing about how badly he was treated. His vision was incredibly singular, and he wasn’t deterred by the potential for further humiliation by the County Board. He did not stop until he reached his objective. He was, in fact, an unstoppable force.

    Of course our situation is not Donegal’s, but our players need to know that whoever takes them over has this same belief in them and will walk through hell fire to bring them to their goal. From what I have seen of the James Horan, I believe he is coming from this very same place and his drive and ambition is very much from his heart. He came within a whisker, and is clever enough know what is needed and what went wrong before.

  26. This is the wrong question?
    What are the characteristics we need
    How do we get them
    Management skills
    :-)co board
    Etc, etc
    The choice should be made calmly by competent experts,(including in my view a player nominee and the like of McGuInness)

  27. In fairness Donie is a number two. There is only two there that are realistic Horan and Rochford. Jack O’Connor is going to be Kerry u21 manager and I don’t think we need a 3rd coming of John Maughan.

    I like what Tony McEntee wrires in The Examiner and he has good experience with Crossmaglen. Need to forget the whole McGuinness thing it makes us look desperate.

    At the end of the day Rochford is the stand out candidate at the moment. As good as Horan was there is nothing to suggest that he has changed when it come to making tactical decisions going by what he has been saying on Newstalk during the summer/

  28. Gerard,
    No need to get so condisending now,
    James horan would be great appointment for me,
    It’s James choice to appoint his team but Rockford would be great asset, he would learn loads from an established setup in one year and bring a lot also.

    Also the current kerry manager learnt his trade as a selector before taking the reigns with success. Loom even at Schmitts progression in rugby, Leinster setup under cheika, manager then with success, then progression to manager of Ireland.

    There is difference in preparing a team for club, u21 or other compared to senior. If I recall pat and Noel won an all irl in 06.
    In my opinion a team is only as strong as the sum of its parts, so let’s use the best parts available and build a successful team long into the future.

    A team of horan with Rockford (that’s if they could work together), would bring stability, strength and contingency for players as well as a fresh enthusiastic voice.

    The players need stability and something they all can role in behind.


  29. What about Ger Bohan, seems to have his finger on the pulse alright. He had wind of a letter before the Managers were even informed. Ger, can you solve the mystery of what was in the letter?

  30. james horan of course, its his team and they want him back and they will get him, county board have probably been told so and are playing the political game of waiting to do a few bogus interviews but they already know their man as they have been told by their bosses that wear the jerseys.

  31. I agree with Sean, calling for McGuinness makes us look desperate and I haven’t heard anything new from James over the last year. It requires someone with backbone to make the hard decisions, and I can’t see that James will be able to do that. He is too close to the players. The poll isn’t calling him out to be the favourite either so that seems to be the consensus. Stephen deserves a crack at it.

  32. Has to be Rochford at this stage. There is no other option. He offers a clean slate. No point in going back to the past – Definition of insanity and all that, you won’t get a different result this time either.

  33. Though some people underrate what Rochford has done with Corofin, I would go for Horan as there’s a lot of logistics to managing a County team and Horan has been best at managing that. Also think despite the doubters he will have a change of approach having seen what H&C did well and what they were criticised for. Buckley would be a good plan B as ultimately how comfortable the players are with management is important and like James they seem to have a lot of time for Donie.
    As for Rochford, he coaches his team to defend from the half lines (very like JH) but he gets them to put the ball in early and fast. They are probably the best club team I’ve seen, beating teams by big scores though will take a while to pass Crossmaglen’s achievements they are the club team most likely to do it.
    So I’ve no doubt he’s an excellent manager but continuity for me and would probably be happy to see him on the JH team if it suited both.
    I suspect the players want JH and that’s what’s most important.

  34. Steady,

    Are you saying that Joe Schmidt was alongside Micheal Cheika in the Leinster coaching set up before becoming chief coach as your post sems to suggest? I don’t think he was and that he came to Leinster only when Cheika left.

    To those who prefer Rochford as manager I ask do you think it practical that Rochford could manage Mayo while continuing as Corofin manager, perhaps until Patrick’s Day? Or do you think that he might walk away from Corofin if offered the Mayo job? If he did walk away from Corofin in mid campaign I would be very surprised. It would seem very cavalier and mercenary. And I do not think that he could do both jobs simultaneously, even for a short period. It is clear now that the Mayo players want a man who knows the job inside out and who is 100% committed in every way. Only James Horan seems to fit the bill.

  35. In other news Mayo U-21s got that best possible draw (on paper) a semi final v Leitrim. It’s 2009 since Mayo either won or reached a Connacht U-21 final, no disrespect to Leitrim but that latter stat should change in 2016.

  36. Watching Rochford he said he would love to manage mayo but he repeated is NOW the right time he is not going in there after the heave and the same cob turned him down two years ago for the u21 job. Donie is the man for the team he worked with JH and the two boys he knows where the logistical mistakes were made I know someone said he’s a coach not a manager he has bags of experience to bring with him and I think he has the balls to make the hard calls for the betterment of the team.

  37. No way Horan to a return for horan, I think he made some terrible calls in big games

    Rochford for me

  38. Why have mcguinnes or o’connor listed? If u include them you may also include Jim Gavin and Jose mourinho, either are as likely as the two listed. Heart says Horan, head says Rochford. Fresh start required but Rochford would need some experience with him, Jimmy Nallen as selector would be a start.
    Then add ciaran mc as forwards coach!

  39. Unless a late candidate throws his hat into the ring It’s between two men Rochford and Horan. I think they players will want Horan back and that could sway it.

    Maughan looks odds on for U21 job and he will be more than happy with that Connacht draw.

  40. A lot of people are missing the main point. This team to a man have had the courage to stand up and demand a higher standard. This is not a clash of personality, spoilt child throwing away the rattles. or a political power struggle. This is a group of young Mayo men demanding higher standards. Given that most of us settle the mediocre that goes with our society time and place, these guys have shown real balls of steel. The desperation of O,Connor and GuInness who may not have any interest. A successful club rookie manager or the successful tried and tested. Truth is they have earned the next call and we should support them fully. Time to show some faith. This election year is making me nervous and we all recall what happened here before.

  41. McGuinness: location – not feasible
    O’Connor: location – not feasible
    Buckley: location – probably not feasible
    Maughan: all mouth no brain
    Horan: had his chance – missed
    Rochford: smart, successful & available

  42. Would love to see McGuinness come in, but it’s just not going to happen I’m afraid.

    Horan with Rochford as selector/coach would be the next best option, but again I can’t really see this happening.
    It would be ideal. James coming in to steady the ship for a year or so and Rochford gaining valuable experience of the inter-county set up under him, before then taking on the job himself.

    But if I had to choose between the two, Rochford for me. I love Horan and have the utmost respect for everything he did for us, I just think it might be time for a fresh start and a new voice/ideas.
    But would still have no problem at all with seeing Horan back at the helm.

    O’Connor? Noooooooo!

  43. Puckout, I wouldn’t quite agree with your dismal of Jim McGuiness there but I do very much like your thinking in terms of a forwards coach in the backroom team.
    For me it is more about how we go about the selection now and if that is approached in the correct way then we will end up with the right man for the job – full stop. My coarse approach to this process would be to put together a 3 or 4 person selection team consisting of the likes of one county board official of progressive thinking and stature, a player like Andy Moran who has been there, done that, in tune with the players but an old head with independent thinking and a business man such as Enda McNulty a motivational coach working across the sporting and corporate sectors and well adept at spotting the qualities we require in a manager. That team are allowed to go, drive, fly to the top candidates i.e. Rochford, McGuinness & Horan – determine if they are first interested in the job and get talking about their availability, interest, desire, ambitions etc. Only Jim McGuinness knows what his mind is on all this, how demanding his job is and the number of hours it consumes each week and there is sure as hell only one way to find out whether or not he would consider the job and the circumstances which would have to prevail for it to work for him. Go and meet the man – go and meet all the top candidates who have more that expressed a passing desire for Mayo to succeed.

  44. PJ, I think we’d all really like to know where standards are supposed to have fallen short. Most people are still baffled by all of this. You say this is not ‘a clash of personality, spoilt child throwing away the rattles or a political power struggle.’ It could well be any one of those things.The players haven’t revealed so far and I understand the reasons are to be sought at the county board meeting next Monday night. Is there information you can share with us that brings you to this conclusion?

  45. Horan:
    Will he be allowed bring his friends as selectors who wont have balls to stop him from making mistakes?
    Will he play a finisher? i.e. a corner forward able to take on and beat his marker? Will those backs and midfielders who have been programmed over 5 years to carry ball be dropped if they are unable to play ball quickly to said finisher?
    Will he play a centre forward i.e. a target for the backs and a playmaker and excellent passer?

    I predict Horan as manager however I don’t see this team as is, being capable to win AI. Need new personnel in backs and forwards and need new style.

    New manager should source more natural talent from junior and intermediate teams to have any chance. Several of those on panel now are not of required standard and Aiden O Shea will not be able to carry team with too many inferior players.

  46. Tough call to make WJ on this issue.

    For me there are simply too many grey areas still to be figured out or at least not in he public domain. For instance I still don’t know what exactly were the “problems” the players had with the previous setup. Was there ever any clarification on these?

    As a result of what went on I also think that whoever comes in will have to be able to deal with big personalities on the players side and handle a lot of expectation as well from fans and players alike.

  47. I really hope Stephen Rochford gets the nod. As regards Horan I can’t forget Mayo tactical mistakes in 2013 AI final with Cluxton’s kick outs and 2014 semi v Kerry, leaving Caff alone on Donaghy for TWO games. I think a new voice and youth could be better than going back to where we were before and untimately failed before.

  48. Sean Moran has a piece in the Times: ‘How to identify an All Ireland winning manager’.

    Sounds like required reading for us all, but I can’t get into it as I have exceeded my freebie limit on that blasted paywall.

    Is it gettable Willie Joe?

  49. I’d be an opinionated aul gobshite most of the time when it comes to Mayo football but I just don’t know what is the right option here, the thing that’s most worrying about Mayo football at present is we seem to have put all our eggs in one basket . In that respect maybe Rochford would be the best option as in you’d imagine he might try to rebuild at the same time as giving it a lash with this team . That would be my only worry with horan in that he just might leave us in an awful state if he isn’t willing to add new blood to the panel . This panel can’t go on forever we have to start blending some youth to it , even if it means being patient with them.

    Without opening up old debates on where horan went wrong tactically , I could never understand his answer to the donaghy v caff question , he muttered something along the lines of ” sure I heard every solution including putting the goalkeeper on donaghy ” that’s fair enough quoting supporters mad cap notions but he still never came up with anything himself.

    In saying all that our best chance of reaching an all Ireland final in 2016 would most likely be under James Horan and for that reason alone I’d just be pursuaded to vote for him.

  50. The team is still, in a lot of ways, regarded as Horans team. That being the case and due to few alternatives, if interested, I would let him have another year at it. Draw the line at the end of next year as i would think win or lose, the end of next season will signal a lot of retirements either by choice or by necessity. At that stage the likes of Rochford could go in and start rebuilding/ building his own team. I believe it would be unfair on Rochford to put him in there at this stage as the pressure there to deliver will be massive as its last chance saloon for a lot of this particular set of players-put that pressure on Horan and the players for the year and they might just pull it off. If they dont succeed they havent quite been good enough, theyll be thanked for there efforts and everyone moves on. Even have Rochford as a selector or whatever this year and take the reigns at the end of the year if thats whats necessary-which I dont think would be a fudge, just sensible.

  51. Thanks HSE, though I still can’t get into it as my readings have been exceeded. Could you give us the gist of it?

  52. 45, I agree with your post except for the Maughan bit. The man dedicated a lot of his life to Mayo football, bringing the Mayo seniors to 3 all-Ireland finals, as well as at u 21 level. Got closer to glory than any other manager since ’51. We should show a little respect for past managers please.

  53. Whille I voted for Stephen, I would be more than happy with James, I think we need to accept the players has someone in mind,probably James, however I think we should establish a panel to interview the candidates, I would hope someone like Andy Moran,Ciaran Shannon, and perhaps Billy Joe Padden, hopefully they would indicate who would be suitable. I hope C Loftus, T Conroy and C Oshea may be ready next year. I think J Nallen would be an asset as selector, I think J M would be a backward step at this stage,even though he done great work for mayo in his early days,I can’t forget ninety seven, the one I really think we left behind against a very poor kerry team,or Pat Fallon in ninety six, his failure to get Kevin Oneill on board or David Brady, leaving M Conroy off in an under twenty one final would count against him I believe

  54. James Horan for me. We all know he made some mistakes, don’t we all, but as a betting man I feel he would bring us a confidence and certainty. He is a smart man and I think he could improve on some of the tactical errors that occurred over his iconic reign.

    I would love to see Rochford come in as a selector and replace James when he goes. James stated other commitments for stepping down so you’d imagine if he came back it would be for a short contract, a year or two.

    Why would Rochford play second fiddle? I ask why wouldn’t he? I know who I think has achieved more in management.

  55. FYI Donie Buckley was previously the joint manager of the Clare football team. I’m almost certain I read an interview once where he said he didn’t particularly like the managing side and preferred to coach instead.

  56. Are we seriously thinking of bringing horan back? My god. Tactically brutal. But then again maybe he is the best of a bad lot.

  57. I’d agree with Steady…Horan with Roch as a selector with a view to take over. This would allow him remain on with Corofin. Even better would be for Roch to take the u21’s. I’ve said before we need senior, u21 and minor linked. Like Tyrone were doing for years and
    what Kerry are doing the past 3 years.

    I voted for McGuiness tho because the question says who would I like to see…. In an ideal world McGuiness would be manager. If he had been in since 2012 with Mayo we would have won an All Ireland. That’s for sure. He worked miracles with a Donegal team going no where before he came along and the only underage talent to work with was one decent u21 crop. In time, his job with Donegal will be looked upon as an outstanding achievement.

    Realistically he hasn’t a notion of leaving Celtic unless he is directly approached by players and backed by serious financial muscle.

    So, it’s Horan. Isn’t it. Hopefully back to finish the business and complete the quest. He is the leader of this team. That’s clear to see. They are still his boys. They look up to him and ultimately I believe they want him.

  58. Buckley:
    Great coach but could he be a great manager? With little to no experience managing players and planning tactics it would be a big step up.

    Won 4 connacht titles, but was shown to have serious chinks in his armor as a tactician and manager.

    Proven all-ireland winner as a player and a manager.

  59. The question was who would I like to see become Mayo manager
    I answered McGuinness.
    If the question was who do I think will become Mayo manger my answer would have been Horan.
    I know that the chances of McGuinness becoming boss are slim to none but he would still be my no 1 choice.
    Failing McGuinness getting the nod then Rochford would have been my 2nd choice.
    Horan I believe will get a second term and despite all he has done for Mayo, I can’t put into words how much respect I have for the man, I believe we will have gone backwards.

  60. WJ there is a comment on oct 13th at 11.13 by a Trevor Naughton. Mad if we have a 2nd Trevor Naughton on here! You might ask them to post under a different ID seeing as i’ve posted to the blog for a number of years using my full name. Aside from that i dont want to be associated with the points made!

  61. Sorry about that Trevor. I will post under Trev from now on. Didn’t think my views were that off the mark given the other commentators and the poll results :-). But I should have checked to see if I had a namesake! My mistake. WJ can you change the name on my last post to Trev please? Thanks

  62. Mc Guinness for me as first choice but i don’t think there is any chance of him leaving Celtic

    Next would be Horan

    Rockford may work but a big risk. It is one thing to win a Club Final when you have the best squad of players at Club Level in the Country. McStay/McHale did the same with St Bridget’s but to manage any of the Top Four County Teams is a big step up.

    We don’t really have time to blood a manager for a few years with the currant panel so therefore I would stick with Horan . I can’t understand how Jason Gibbons was not on this years Panel having seen him against Ballina and Breaffy in the Club Championship
    Fadden of Breaffy and Corduff of Ballina may be worth a look at

  63. @ catcol, Your welcome, some of the main points are as follows:

    What should counties look for? The most important aspect is the plan. Decent plans have interim targets and if they’re being hit chances are the overall programme is worthy of perseverance. Nothing secures as emphatically what is nowadays known as ‘buy-in’ as the predicted outcomes of the plan coming to pass.

    What sort of career do successful managers have? Teaching is often cited as the ideal job with its summer vacations but principals for instance don’t have a great deal of time off. The profession is still the most popular one amongst All-Ireland winning managers of the past 42 years since the days of Heffernan and O’Dwyer. Supplemented by Cody’s huge haul in Kilkenny, 31 All-Irelands out of the 84 on offer were managed by 12 individual teachers. Although the hospitality business has had its share with 13, spread among five managers, the second most likely career choice for an All-Ireland-winning manager is financial services with eight managers although just 10 titles.

    The most common background for successful senior inter-county managers is that they achieved a level of attainment as underage coaches. Fourteen All-Ireland winning managers had their most successful previous experience with county teams at minor or under-21. Most prominently in recent years, Jim Gavin, Mickey Harte, Jack O’Connor, John O’Mahony and Páidí Ó Sé all managed under-21 sides that won All-Irelands and Jim McGuinness took Donegal to a final in 2010. The second most common background is experience with a senior county management although not always as manager – 11 of the managers in the period under review had this on their CV and frequently their appointment was a formality. Some, like Jack O’Connor, were successful both as an underage manager and senior selector. This category covers some, like John O’Mahony or David Fitzgerald, who brought different counties to All-Ireland finals before being ultimately successful elsewhere.

    There are also however 10 managers who largely sprang out of nowhere – like Liam Griffin, Pat Gilroy and Cody – but who impress the county officials sufficiently to secure appointment. Interestingly just two – Eugene McGee and Joe Kernan – won club All-Ireland titles before appointment to county teams.

    An applicant’s previous record of course can be instructive – but that’s not always the case. Brian Cody for instance had no track record of success at club level when offered the Kilkenny job 17 years ago.

  64. O’Sullivan, if Corofin have the best squad of players at club level in the country, then it was some achievement by the Mitchels side in 2013/14 to not only annex their first county title in 20 odd years, but beat that much vaunted Corofin side in their own back yard, before dethroning the reigning champions St. Brigids in the Hyde.

  65. Well it’s easy to say he had the best squad in the country after they win the all-Ireland!! But where were they before he took over? Why could a manager who transformed a team that he knew nothing not do the same with an even better squad of players. Surely the process is the same whether it’s club or county and it’s plain to see we have the players good enough to win but we came up short on the side line.

    Horan got so close but we need a bit more from management. That’s why I would like to give it to someone else now.

  66. I think it’s safe to say it will be Horan and Rochford or both in some way. The lads on the County Board don’t do radical or ambition.

    JH has his tactical flaws but he might have learned.

    While rochford is my choice it does not necessarily follow that winning an club All Irelans guarantees success. For my mind he ia the man for the longer term for us.

  67. Regarding the Mitchells beating Corofin in 2013, if I rember right that day Corofin were missing Kieran Fitz at fullback, Daithi Burke at centre half back and Gary Delaney at centre half forward following injuries in the county final, they also had 14 or 15 wides more than Castlebar that sunday and Roachford was joint manager that year with David Morris. I think Vincents then gave the Mitchells a big lesson on Patricks day, Corofin put that record straight last year when they gave a total football performances against the best team in mayo for the past 5 years in the connacht fianal before destroying Vincents on Valentines day. Many here keep mentioning the mayo players that have all ireland under 21 medals from 2006 but I believe Corofin have more in there squad, Morris, Healy, Cathal and Liam Silke, Daithi Burke, Mike Farragher have under 21 all ireland winners medals, you can also include Ian Burke under 21 player of the year, Gary Sice under 21 and hogan cup all ireland winner, Alan Burke captain of Galway under 21 All Ireland winners. I almost forgot Kieran Fitzgearld Senior all Ireland medal holder and All Star in 2001, from what I have read the Corofin players think S Roachford is a brilliant manager but he did have fair team of winners to work with also.

  68. Mayonaze has it the way I’d want it to be ‘cept I’d like to ask JH a few questions to see what he has really learned!

    (1) Tell me all about your attitude to defence John with emphasis on the FB position. Evaluate the term ‘ Sweeper’ and outline your understanding of ‘the Blanket Defence’

    (2) What James would you like to see happening in the forwards that you haven’t seen before?

    (3) What do you think of E Regan .C OShea, K Rutledge, D Coen, C Loftus?

    It’s always been beyond me as to why there’s been sweet all connection between the county grades …ie.U-16 and up. Seems to me there ought to be a position of ‘Football Director’ instituted or something,to foster a continuity here and establish a proper and durable Mayo footballing ethos.

    If love to see not J Maughan (tks u !) but Rochford doing the U-21 with an eye ahead to the future. I’d say it looks like it’s asking too much but then again , what could be too much when you re after what’s best and possible?

  69. Why J Horan? Did he not resign last year and during his term make some howlers ?

    S Rochford has to be the preferred person provided he resigns from the club job

    ITs plain daft to consider OConnor ,McGuinness etc simply because they are not
    available or living nearby.

  70. For a county with such a poor record of major success in the last 60 plus years I think some of the criticism of past managers is a bit harsh. For some posters JH was tactically brutal. Was he really. yeah he was stubborn on Caff v donaghy and may have made other errors but at least he created a team we could be proud of. Maughan is now in the firing line about his comments re the players which in my opinion were in poor taste. But that does not prevent my admiration for him as manager. He took over Mayo after the horrors of 93. 94 and 95 and lead us to 3 AIFs O Mahoney comes in for criticism mainly for a poor second spell in charge but he lead us to our first back to back Connacht titles and first AIF in 38 years. So I think these 3 guys are most deserving of respect based on what they contributed to Mayo football. My choice for next manage would be Rochford just about but whoever it is I am sure he will do his best for the county and will therefore have my support

  71. Thanks HSE – great summary there.

    Interesting that Cody had no background when taking over Kilkenny, who weren’t exactly short of managerial possibilities at the time.

  72. Exactly GAAloopy, Corofin had a great team, and yet The Mitchels controlled that game after Corofin had gotten off to a great start. Also, don’t forget that they also took down raging hot favourites Dr. Crokes in the Semi final too. Credit where credit is due.
    The parallel I think most people are drawing between Corofin and Mayo is that Rochford has taken a team of talented individuals and made them winners, which is exactly what Mayo need.
    I don’t think returning to the past will solve the current conundrum with this Mayo team. As has been said before, the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, and expecting different results. James had 4 turns at it, and sadly, wasn’t able to pull it off.
    People saying that he will now take all the good things that Holmes & Connelly put in place this year on board, are ignoring what he has been saying all summer as a pundit. In my line of work, I find that people always revert to type when under pressure, and unfortunately, James has shown this to be true during his 4 years.
    Also remember, Rochford is the only candidate that comes with a clean slate, which should help to unify the squad, and heal the wounds caused by the players actions. Don’t forget, if what is in the papers is true, that there were 7 players who did not agree with the course of action taken.
    The Rochford option offers us a way out of this mess. To summarise, he offers a fresh start, comes with no baggage, would help unite a divided dressing room, learns from his mistakes, and mostly importantly is a proven winner. His appointment would be acceptable to all Mayo supporters, whereas, any other option would just cause more division. Time to unite behind one man!

  73. Apologies in advance of going off the title of this thread but what is the reaction from croke park season ticket holders as a result of their price increases. No early bird offer this year coupled with the significant increase for juveniles. My own opinion is that it is unwarranted and takes a lot of good will from this offering. The only draw it has going for it is the carrot of an all ireland ticket if we are lucky enough to reach this stage again.

  74. I’m coming to this discussion a little late for forgive the likely repetition. BUT….

    I’m really surprised that we could even consider appointing John Maughan?? He’s contributed an awful lot to Mayo football and in my opinion was instrumental in moving beyond some pretty harrowing years after the hollow euphoria of ’89. However football has moved on and I can’t see how he could be expected to integrate back into that level of management after so many years away from the game.

    There seems to be a large degree of scepticism about any potential return of James Horan. I do agree that mistakes were made under his reign but the improvement delivered was also seismic. For me I see the potential for learning there.

  75. Rock That’s a great point you made. How quickly we forget the change that occurred in our fortunes when JH took over. The game of every single player improved from the start. I cannot see any of the top teams welcome his return to the Mayo sidelines. Our neighbours in the West certainly do not want to see it happen. So many Rockford supporters with so much faith that he can take it to the next level based on a club championship result. Have any of you considered the gap that exists between the two.

  76. Hmmm: looks like a military-style campaign has swung into action on the poll, with John Maughan shooting up from fifth to second place in the voting inside the last 24 hours! It’s not the first online poll (indeed not the first poll on who should be the Mayo manager conducted on this site) to be influenced by concerted voting practices. I think maybe it’s time to close this one, as I reckon all bona fide voters have cast their ballots by now.

  77. Rochford may be a very good manager but any evaluation of him needs to take into account the fact that he is operating at a club who have had great systems and ethos for many years. There are many great people at the club. People like Frank Morris and others have produced a club with great coaching, ethos, finances and a particular playing style that goes throughout the whole club. I feel that what Mayo likes is a playing ethos and continuity of same throughout all teams underage and adult. Whilst Mayo have gone some way to developing a style and good practices these do not stretch thorughout all Mayo teams and, indeed, into clubs through proper training structures and help.

  78. Willie Joe, I was just about to suggest a second run off poll like the French elections.

    McGuinness and O’Connor have about 200 votes between them, but are not realistic candidates, so it’s a key question of where they would go?

    As of now, it’s hard to believe that JH is doing so poorly, but maybe those second preferences would help him.

    It’s been a fantastic debate, one of the best ever, so I think a second poll might also have people changing their mind, which would be reasonable in the context of the debate that has taken place.

  79. I’m with you on a run-off poll, Catcol, but I think the best time to do this is once the candidates are confirmed. This poll was just one to test the waters by including all of the most frequently mentioned names but I agree that a second poll would be good once we know who is really in the field for the job.

  80. Yeah, good approach WJ.

    County Board would need to inject some real urgency. It’s a fine line between putting a selection process in train, going through all the normal correct hoops, and moving quickly if the right man is available. Liverpool didn’t hang around before appointing their man.

    BTW, interesting interviews in the Examiner with Cian O’Neill (he sure doesn’t do understated), where he talks of four tiers, with Dublin, Kerry, and Mayo out in front, Donegal Cork and Tyrone behind them, and a big gap split into two – we can guess the rest.

    It’s here: http://tinyurl.com/og83d45

  81. Upon asking for help for coaching for a secondary school we were told by a county board representative to ‘give them a ball and let them kick it around’.

  82. Sinabhuil Another great point and one that requires strategic thinkers and planning. We need an end to end system and we have the people. Do we have the system to implement it I wonder.

  83. Which proves WJ how influential this site is. It’s obvious the hidden hands that dictate Mayo football is at work once more. When I saw the county board parachute Maughans name in for the U21 job I also saw another agenda possibly. He would be elevated to help iron out perceived flaws in the senior set up. Since the senior managers are now gone, I hope the board postpones as Sean Rice suggests , the U21 appointment. Maughans comments certainly didn’t send warm signals to the senior panel or two/three alleged ringleaders.

    The Mayo News had Neary suggesting (A) there was no rush sorting out the senior job. (B) a paragraph down he then suggested it would be sooner rather than later. Make yere mind up for fucks sake and get a grip on the entire mess for once and for all. The draw for Connscht is tonight. Time and tide are moving , lets catch the ship before we are left behind.

    For me it’s simple. Rochford as soon as possible. Let him look for a heavy hitter out there for a bit of consultancy and advice. Time for pollitiking to stop. Mayo is not the preserve of the McHale Park boot room. It’s our heritage and team. Step up to the bar then county board.

  84. Would John Maughan not be considered a good appointment for the 21s ? I’m not sure a delay on under 21 appointment is wise , draw has now been made too, we play Leitrim in semi final , so we got a right good handy draw in fairness . We need to win Connacht u 21 this year at the very least to bring them 13 and 14 minor players on and get them winning again .

  85. Thanks catcol, yes it is an interesting article alright by Sean Moran in the Irish Times, it does give some pointers in the right direction about how to choose the best man for the job!

    I also see that in Kildare they have made the current 21 Manager, Bryan Murphy, a selector with the senior team under Cian O’Neill as well. This is a good idea and shows joined up thinking. They want to have more of a link-up between their senior and U21 teams. More teams should probably follow this approach in the future.

  86. It has to be McGuinness, Rochford or Horan – if the County Board appoints any one else, they are chastising the players and as a result, our Team chances of winning Sam are gone for years. I am attending Mayo games since the mid sixties, if John Maughan was appointed I would not attend another Mayo game… When James Horan was in charge John Maughan wrote in the Mayo Advertiser about the size of ‘James’s Back room Team’…. Most Mayo supporters would want our Senior Team to have the BEST back up that is needed to be successful. I am not connected to any member of the Mayo Panel – I just want the VERY BEST for this Mayo Team.

  87. I would like to see the results of a poll between

    1 Rochford

    2 Horan

    3 Rochford / Horan

    Forget about the rest and don’t be retiring Andy Moran as he is still one of our best scoring forwards.Grossly unfair to be putting him forward for a management role.

  88. Stephen won’t be next manager, as things are at the minute it will be J.H. Please leave John Maughan where he is, brought Mayo on at the time but would not be good choice now with where this squad are at.

  89. “Mayo is not the preserve of the McHale Park boot room. It’s our heritage and team.” Amen to that. And amen to wanting the very best for this team, regardless of how many people are in the backroom. Amused too by the swing in voting in such a short space of time, but it just shows who’s reading.

    More and more, for me it’s Rochford. (As opposed to this Rockford lad who seems to have crept into the running, is he one of those outsiders we’re so averse to?) The more I hear, the more I like. And if Buckley is gone, or not interested in a management role as Digits states above, then there’s only one name I want to see in there.

    But I’d like to see him going in there with a long-term plan, not on a “win or bust” platform which seems to be the mentality, if not so much in Mayo, then certainly outside. We need to hold our nerve on this one and be patient (this shouldn’t really be a problem after 64 years).

    We have a bunch of young lads that won a minor All-Ireland in the county, including a very promising bunch of forwards in there. And I still maintain that despite our dreadful run at U21 this year, that bunch of players is far better than their performances suggested. This needs to be long-term (3-5 year) plan, and if we can only get this part of the process right, it’s very achievable.

  90. Seeing as everyone keeps talking about ‘Rockford’, this is especially for those of you who (like me, sadly) are old enough to remember one of the greatest cop shows of all time – here.

  91. I saw that too as I see their tipp a o Shea for number 14 at the all star I am not to sure the all stars he did not do enough for one good game against Sligo

  92. Jesus, Cait are you on the sauce again or what? Have you forgotten his performance against Donegal in the quarters? Or the fact that it took three Dublin players to mark him in the two semis?!

  93. All – for info, I’ve gone back over the log for the poll and I’ve knocked a chunk of votes off John Maughan to take account of that late unexplained surge. The final result you see in the post shows the voting position before that covert military-style operation swung into action yesterday.

  94. The way AOS was marked by Dublin in both semi finals is the way he will likely be marked by all sides from now on if he remains at full forward so the new management will have to think outside the box to get best out of AOS.

  95. I know it’s not fashionable to say the simplistic stuff of the old school thought when it comes too gaa tactics but ffs if AOS is getting doubled/treble marked surely it frees up other players but for some reason we didn’t know how to take advantage of it

  96. That tune was running round my head all evening…so John Maughan finishes 3%behind James horan in polls?? That I didn’t see coming..would love to know why people would like him at the helm? That’s a genuine question… Anyway, only a matter of time before j h returns..he’s been biding his time believe me.

  97. John Maughan looks odds on for the U-21 gig maybe some voters reckon he can do both job as he did before? but let be honest the game has moved on since Maughan was at his peak in management.

  98. Holy smoley re the anti tanned crossmolina genius .

    How do ye know Maughan has not educated himself in the modern game as well as every other gaa man in the country . Do ye think he’s been in a cave since 2004 ? I hope ye will all be so vocal if he leads Mayo to under 21 glory .

  99. I think the senior position will be filled first before the u21 one, reason being that both the senior & u21 managers need to be able to work together and Maughan in my view has done irreparable damage to himself by his silly comments about the players.

    Time to move on from Maughan as he is not the answer to any of these roles – powers that be in CB though may have other thoughts seeing as they nominated him.

    Time to move on this as winter programs etc need to be put in place with all the other prep work to be undertaken to get all the players / potential new players ready for next year.

  100. its one thing to be educated in football.. Management of an inter county team is a different beast entirely..Would lash on a double dose of fake tan if Maughan proves his worth at U 21..

  101. Since Maughan lead Mayo seniors to the 2004 All Ireland final he has done less than great at Roscommon,NUIG and Achill. It looks like he will get the U21 job on past success but the worry there is the game may have moved on too much since he was successful.

  102. The players had issues with PH and by inference will have issues with JM at U-21 or Senior level if ever appointed. For both matches against Dublin PH had a communication line with JM in the stand (from a reliable source); Joint management was an issue but 3 was a crowd. If they did’t have issues with JM they certainly do now after his ridiculous comments about the players actions, same goes for MC.

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