Clare senior hurling manager Brian Lohan has revealed he had looked for the three-year term that has been unanimously recommended by the county board executive.
A full board meeting must endorse the proposal but it is expected the Wolfe Tones man will get the green light to remain in charge until the end of the 2024 season.
Speaking to, the two-time All-Ireland SHC winner explained he wouldn’t have sought the extension were it not for the support of the Clare public and clubs.
“I am happy with that.” he said of the extension proposal. “I was looking for commitment for the three years and happy that we've got that from the executive of the board. Now it goes to the clubs and the clubs will decide whether that suits or not. There’s good enough support from the clubs since I got the job. I’d be happy enough that it will happen.”
He continued: “We’ve always had great support from the public, great support from the clubs, great support from the players. I’m not a fool - if that wasn’t there I wouldn’t be looking for the job.
“It’s great. We’ve had support from a brilliant committee in Club Clare that have been excellent for us for the last couple of years. People appreciate that we’re there to do a job and we’re working as hard as we can. Sometimes it doesn’t work out as well as we expect to but I think the Clare public appreciate we are putting everything into it. Sometimes things go against you and they’re not going to be on your back over it.”
Lohan is confident Clare can make further improvements in 2022. “In inter-county hurling now, there’s an awful lot of work involved and it takes a bit of time to get your team together and get good, professional advice. The board would be conscious of that and I suppose are looking at the job over the last two years and have decided to give us the next three to see if we can try and improve things.
“The big thing when we were looking at it initially was we felt we had good players and looking at set-ups around the country there is very professional set-ups out there and we probably had to get that to a different level because the game is constantly moving on and we can see that over the weekend with the performance of Limerick and how professional their set-up is and the kind of advice they have access to.
“It’s trying to move Clare up to that level because we think we have the quality of players and we think we have that potential but it takes a huge amount of work obviously.”
Lohan feels Clare were unfortunate at stages during the 2021 Championship. “It’s a tough, attritional game now and if you remember during the summer the weather was exceptionally warm. That is tough on the players.
“We probably weren’t that lucky. We got no bye in the qualifiers and the opponents at that level are tough so it could have been an easier route but it was the route we got and maybe a little bit lucky. But there wasn’t a word of complaint from the players.” Describing Limerick as “a serious set-up” with an abundance of power, Lohan maintains there will “a lot of teams that will be itching to get a shot at them and we’re hoping to be one of those teams. They’re obviously in great shape at the moment.”
After two Covid-affected years in charge, the 49-year-old hopes there is more of an opportunity for players to enjoy themselves next season.
“From my playing days, there was a brilliant social aspect to hurling, being with your team-mates in a Clare set-up. Whereas now it’s different - you get your bit of grub after the game with your plastic forks, you eat on your lap and you go away home.
“That’s the extent of it now but that’s the way it has to be for all of the teams. (It’s) a lot tougher on the players over the last few years but hopefully that will change going into the new season.”