Goulding keen for Counihan to stay on

Goulding keen for Counihan to stay on

OPEL GPA Footballer of the Month for September, Daniel Goulding, believes that Cork's All-Ireland winning manager Conor Counihan will be back patrolling the sidelines for the Rebels in 2011.

In an interview last weekend, Counihan said that he will take three weeks out to decide whether or not to commit to another year in charge of Cork.

"Everyone will want to see him back and have another crack at it," said Goulding.

"He is after bringing a lot of belief and abandon to the team and it would be great to have him around for another year."

Eire Og clubman Goulding recognises the tremendous input Counihan has had on the Rebels since taking over in 2008.

In that two-and-a-half year spell Cork have claimed Division 1 and 2 league honours, and a Munster crown which they added to with their All-Ireland success less than a fortnight ago.

"He has brought a great energy to the panel and also there is a huge competitiveness for places as well.

"I think that ups the intensity in training and pushes fellas to the limit, and I suppose everything that Conor has done over the last year or two has been a major positive."

Goulding's club and county colleague Ciarán Sheehan has been making the headlines this year in his debut season in senior inter-county football.

Acknowledging his superb displays, Goulding is confident that Sheehan will not be lured Down Under by Australian Rules club, Carlton Blues.

The 19-year-old forward spent a month with Carlton late last year before homesickness led him back to Cork.

"I suppose there will be offers for him the whole time. He's a super talent and they are interested in him. I'd be hoping he will stay. If you look at the man, it is hard to believe that he's 19 years of age.

"I played Intermediate Championship hurling with him when he was 15, so I know he is probably different to other fellas.

"For a 19-year-old he is exceptional and he had a great second half in the final as well when we needed it."

Indeed Goulding may also court some interest from the Aussies, as he has been shortlisted for trials with the Irish International Rules squad, for their two Test series against Australia next month.

Goulding would love to be involved, but with an Evening Echo Intermediate Football Championship semi-final against Kildorrery at Pairc Ui Rinn on Saturday, the trials may have come too early for the Bord Gais Energy employee.

"The club duties in Cork are savage important and it is hard to find the time to get everything in, but at the same time it is a massive honour," he admitted.

"I would love to play it, personally speaking. I think it would be a great series to be involved in.

"At the same time, I don't know how other counties are, but in Cork your club is your club and you have to keep giving your most for them."

Goulding added: "We beat Cill na Martra last weekend in the quarter-final. We are well primed for the Kildorrery game now and it's going to be a tough challenge.

"On the club front it is looking good for us, but I suppose everyone is out to get you when you have a couple of Cork lads on board.

"But you certainly can't take any game for granted, especially club games."

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