O'Neill stops short of denying Kerry move

Cian O'Neill (right)

Highly-regarded coach Cian O'Neill has refused to rule out a potential move to Eamonn Fitzmaurice's new Kerry management team.

Marked out as one of the best GAA strength and conditioning coaches in the country, O'Neill is leaving beaten All-Ireland SFC finalists Mayo after assisting them this past season.

The Kildare man is based in Limerick, working as a lecturer in the University of Limerick, and confirmed that his departure from the Mayo set-up was based on the affects of the long commute to Castlebar.

Having had two discs in his back removed in 2009 following a car accident, he told the Irish Examiner: "I'm being seen to leave Mayo after just a year but there was never any chance of me doing a second year.

"My back has got worse with the driving and the five-and-a-half hour round trips were causing problems for my health. That is the only reason why I won't be with Mayo next year."

He confirmed that he spoke with new Kerry boss Fitzmaurice in recent weeks, but only to give his advice on appointing a suitable physical trainer for the Kingdom set-up.

With Fitzmaurice seeking a replacement for Alan O'Sullivan, O'Neill added: "Eamonn was looking for a physical trainer and I gave him three names. There was nothing spoken about in terms of leaving Mayo.

"Eamonn was interested in discussing physical trainers and that's not my area anymore and Eamonn does the coaching himself. Anything else wasn't discussed at any great length."

O'Neill may be attempting to quell media talk of his reported switch to the Kerry set-up, however, suggesting that he would be "interested in a position closer to Limerick".

Email Updates

Receive our lunchtime briefing straight to your inbox

More in this Section

This 96th-minute equalising bicycle kick from a goalkeeper is without question the most outrageous goal of 2016

Santi Cazorla faces long Arsenal absence as he heads for ankle surgery

Ronald Koeman learned the hard way that you can't please everyone with your Christmas tree decorations

Former Chelsea star reportedly considering stake in League of Ireland club


Today's Stories

Peter O’Mahony returns to lead Munster into battle

Pochettino: Harry Kane deal will frustrate rivals

McGees refused to publicly back Jim McGuinness in Kevin Cassidy furore

Tiger toils in the Bahamas turning potential 68 into a 73

Lifestyle

Santa plays by the house rules with parent friendly presents

Ask Audrey has been sorting out Cork people for years

How Cork's retailers turn their windows into a winter wonderland

The story behind your favourite Christmas shop window dressings

More From The Irish Examiner