GAA managerial changes

THERE is the usual merry-go-round of managerial changes in the county with the big news being the appointment of Damien Barton at Slaughtneil. The former Derry and Newbridge star has previously managed Ballinderry, Loup, Donaghmore in Tyrone and Burren in Down.

Thursday, 14th January 2010, 8:34 am

After a very poor 2009 Slaughtneil with a good panel of players will be hoping to bounce back under the highly respected Barton.

John Brennan led Loup to the county title last year but as yet he has not declared his hand s to whether he will stay put or join up with his nephew Henry Downey who has been appointed manager of Lavey.

Former Derry manager Paddy Crozier is the new manager of promising Tyrone club team Omagh St. Enda's. Paddy managed Derry for three years and has had club experience with his home team Ballymaguigan as well as Dungiven and Lavey. He was a selector for a number of years on Derry minor teams.

As expected Joseph Cassidy has got a second term at Bellaghy where he did reasonably well in his first year taking them to the championship semi final and joint top of the First Division.

Former Magherafelt player Barry Dillon is retained at Ballinascreen while Ballinderry who had a forgettable 2009 under James McCartan have their own Niall Conway leading a strong management team. Injuries and suspension hit their resources hard but with Paul Conway, Adrian McGuckian and Fabien Muldoon in his backroom team Conway who also trains the Antrim county team could well turn the Shamrock's fortunes around.

Sean McGoldrick has an eighth year in charge of Coleraine who have risen from the junior ranks to a very strong senior team in a relatively short period of time. They have a young and physically strong team who are now seen as genuine championship contenders. Swatragh have former Tyrone and Errigal Ciaran player Eamonn Kavanagh installed for another season.

Glen who struggled for much of last season until Mickey Moran came in to steer them to safety have ex Antrim manaer Mickey Culbert in charge for the coming season.

Former Tyrone star Gavin Devlin is again the manager at Newbridge who sowed a big improvement last season and will he hoping to build on that.

A number of the top clubs have yet to announce their manager but Liam Bradley could well return to the Glenullin job and combine it with his Antrim post.

Slaughtmanus with two successive promotions behind them have retained Angelo Proctor and Christopher Cooke.

In the Intermediate division Faughanvale have appointed former Foreglen player Derek McFeely and remarkably his brother Noel will be managing nearby Limavady in the junior ranks.

Castledawson relegated for the second successive year have given former Clonoe boss Paddy Linden the task of getting them back into senior football. Craigbane have local man Kevin Moore at the helm and he will be hoping that the injury problems that dogged the club last season will be gone. Paul Donnelly and Colm Rocks are in charge at Desertmartin while former star player Damien O'Connor whose career was cut short by injury is the new man at Foreglen.

Former Bellaghy and Lavey player Jude Donnelly moves from Greenlough to Lissan where he will be assisted by Fergal McElhatton as trainer. Former Donegal defender Paddy Campbell now living in Derry has a second year in charge at Stelstown.

Moneymore again have Patrick McGuckian in charge of affairs.

Ggeoffrey McGonigle has a third year in charge at Dolans who were promoted last season as well as winning the junior championship and Carlin Cup. Well known coach Paul Simpson has been appointed manager of relegated Doire Trasna and Glack have retained Noel Canning who took over in mid season from John McLaughlin who is the new Magilligan manager.