Jim McGuinness will not be the next Mayo football manager, with the 2012 All-Ireland winning Donegal boss ruling himself out of the running to succeed Stephen Rochford.
When asked at yesterday evening’s Off The Ball All-Ireland preview event at Croke Park if he was interested in returning to inter-county management, McGuinness replied: “Not at the moment, definitely not.”
McGuinness, who left his assistant coach role at Chinese club Beijing Sinobo Guoan in January, is committed to soccer for the immediate future.
I am on a journey, really. I have come back and finished my badges. I’m ready to take a managerial position [in soccer]. The important thing is not about getting a club, it’s about getting the right club.
James Horan, who served as Mayo manager from 2011-14, was far less emphatic about the possibility of him returning to the post when speaking at the same event.
Horan said he’d “love to get involved again” with Mayo, but is unsure if the time is right for him to reclaim the bainisteoir’s bib.
“Stephen [Rochford] has had a very successful three years involved with Mayo. I just think he needs a bit of space. You don’t need people shouting, ‘I’m going for it’. Let’s let the process take its course. I am the manager of Westport. Really enjoying that, working with an ambitious group of young players. I genuinely haven’t really thought about [the Mayo position]. I am very happy with Westport.”
“At some stage, of course, I’d love to get involved again, but is the time right for me, for the team, for the county board? I don’t know if it is. There’s so much stuff there. At the moment, I would say for me, personally, no. I’ve so much going on at the moment. In the future, who knows what will happen.”
This story first appeared in the Irish Examiner.