Ray steps up to U21 job + Johnno on 2010 draw

raydempseyI got a text alert from The Brother last night telling me he’d read in the Western (the paper version that is) that Ray Dempsey had been the only nominee for U21 manager to be proposed at the County Board meeting last Wednesday night.  I texted him back to say that I hadn’t heard anything about this but that if there was something to it then the Mayo News would surely have the story today.  There is and here it is, in the form of the first interview to be conducted with the county’s new U21 manager, one Ray Dempsey.

This is great news, both the fact that The Brother wasn’t spoofing me but more importantly that Ray has been given the chance to work again with the lads he’s had at minor level over the past three years.  Ray makes the point in that interview that the 2007 cohort, who fell at the first hurdle in that year’s minor championship, will have a point to prove at U21 level next year but the panel he assembles for the county’s fifth successive defence of its provincial title at this level will also surely include the cream of the crop from the two sides that reached the All-Ireland in 2008 and again this year.  Ray says that “the door is open for everyone” that’s eligible to play U21 for the county next year and that trials will be held early in the New Year prior to putting together a championship panel.  In a typically Rayesque manner, the Knockmore man called on all eligible players  to “get themselves ready to give themselves the best possible opportunity to play county football”.

johnomahony1Elsewhere in the Mayo News, Johnno puts on his best sourpuss visage and has a bit of a moan about how hard next year’s Connacht championship draw is for us.  No surprises there, I guess, and, in fairness to El Jefe, he did admit “sure, that’s how the cards have been dealt to us”. He’s mellowing, I reckon.

That same article, by the way, also confirms that Conor Mortimer and Alan Dillon will both be in the Antipodes until mid-February and so will miss the first few NFL matches. It’s also stated in that report there was a bit of a frank exchange of views between Johnno and the County Board executive at a behind-closed-doors meeting last week about team re-building and where we’re heading as we face into 2010.  The usual closed season stuff, in other words.

5 thoughts on “Ray steps up to U21 job + Johnno on 2010 draw

  1. I dont see it as being beyond the boards remit to let johnno know behind closed doors that they are not exactly overjoyed with the progress. I hope it was a very frank exchange !

    Congrats to Ray , great news there, will watch the U21’s with interest this year..

    As for Mortimer and Dillon , sure they can stay fit over there playing that Aussie rules game , they might even bring a few quid back to sort out the nations balance of payments….

  2. “O’Mahony was said to be frank in his answers and left none of the delegates in any doubt that he believes he is the best man to deliver an All-Ireland for Mayo.”

    aye but do they believe he is the best man ?

  3. Just read the bit by Daniel Carey in the Mayo News. Have to say I am totally depressed at O Mahoney. God, we are in the weakest province in the country. If we are not able for Galway, Sligo or the rest over there then we deserve to be out and O Mahoney with the team. He had a moan in the Irish Independent about the lack of talent at the county final. What does he expect at the arse end of a season thrown into disaray with his own county team throwing all the fixtures into chaos. The only positive thing he said was that he was the man to bring us to an All Ireland.He had no choice but to say that. I expect to see a man with a red suit and white beard before Johnno takes us to an All Ireland. Unfortunatly we have to let this one run its dismal course. Best of luck to Ray Dempsey.

  4. Best of luck to Ray.
    I hope we get someone like Ray to manage our minors – instill a bit of aggression into the team like Ray has done.

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