Waterford GAA urged to appoint new hurling manager four weeks after Liam Cahill’s departure amid Davey Fitzgerald’s rink

DAN SHANAHAN asked Waterford to appoint a manager as soon as possible, no matter who got the job.

Dewars have yet to find a replacement for Liam Cahill, who jumped ship last month after three seasons in charge to take over for his native Tipperary.


Davey Fitzgerald and Derek McGrath both involved in vacant Waterford hurling jobsCredit: Sportsfile

Colm Bonnar became Premier boss on 13th July after just one year.

Cahill then resigned from the Waterford hot seat within 48 hours and was announced as Tipp’s new manager for a three-year term.

A big summer was in store as he led Waterford to the 2020 All-Ireland final and this year’s NHL title.

They were touted as the main threat to Limerick’s dominance, but collapsed when it mattered most in the championship.

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They finished fourth in a round-robin Munster campaign, winning only one game, meaning the summer ended on 22 May, but after almost three months they are still without a manager.

Former boss Davey Fitzgerald has been linked with a sensational return to work after leading him to the 2008 All-Ireland final and the 2010 Munster title when Shanahan was on the panel.

Derek McGrath was a favorite of the players he coached for five seasons, and Shannan was his right-hand man as a coach.

McGrath led them to the 2017 All-Ireland final and stepped down as manager at the end of a disappointing campaign in 2018 when they failed to win a match in the new round-robin provincial system.

Former Kilkenny hitman and former Leash boss Eddie Brennan has also been linked in a recent post as the quest to find their man has surged.

Former Days skipper Stephen Mornfey reportedly promised that Barrygunner boss Darrah O’Sullivan would step out of the fray and keep Kelly in charge.

“Dan the Man” clarified that McGrath has not yet been approached, but insists the county must act quickly.

Their club championship is gaining momentum and the group stage will begin to culminate this weekend.

He told SunSport:

“Waterford’s club championship has already gone through two or three rounds, and with one or two clubs out this weekend, there will be nothing to play.

“It’s important to seal this very quickly whoever gets it. Whether it’s Davey or Derek or Eddie Brennan, whoever they’ve appointed.

“If that makes sense, it’s not fair to the players that they aren’t being watched.

“They have run the club championship without Waterford’s manager for the past three weeks, so it’s something that has to be resolved pretty quickly.

“As I said, there are many players who will not be competing in hurling after this weekend.

“Now we have to look at the club’s players at junior, intermediate and senior level and see if we can find something that wasn’t there the previous year.”

Dan the Man

Shanahan continues to play for his beloved Lismore, 45, and is looking forward to having old friend McGrath back in the hot seat.

Déise are hungry for an All-Ireland and have not won since 1959. Five years ago, they came painfully close under the De La Salle man when Galway defeated them by his 0-26 to 2-17.

Shanahan had a tumultuous relationship with Davey Fitz when Claire’s Man took office in 2008.

The iconic hitman felt he deserved more game time and subsequently retired from inter-county hurling in 2010 after losing to Tipperary in the All-Ireland semi-final.

The three-time All-Star winner has admitted that the former Clare and Wexford boss could be the right person in the county to spice things up again.

Fitz the Bill

Davy stepped down last year after leading Banner to an All-Ireland title in 2013 and Wexford to their first Leinster title since 2004 in 2019.

He has coached the Cork Camogie team this season, but announced on Sunday that he would be retiring from that role after the defeat to Kilkenny.

Shanahan knows the two are great choices for Days’ job.

“It’s hard to know. I hear Derek is interested again. He knows hurling in Waterford and most of the players in the county, so he’d be a great guy for the job, but I don’t think so. He approached me.

“Eddie Brennan has also been mentioned, but I don’t know anything about it. Davey Fitz has been mentioned a lot this week.

“Me and Davey didn’t get along, but he was a good guy at this job.

“He’s been there before, but he’s never trained a current player, so he’ll be coming from scratch. Plus, he knows how to throw inside out.

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“I would love to have someone ratify as soon as possible because it would be great to have a manager in the county so we can go see the players at the clubs.

“Whether it’s Derek or Davey, the sooner you appoint someone, the better, because players can go unnoticed.” Waterford GAA urged to appoint new hurling manager four weeks after Liam Cahill’s departure amid Davey Fitzgerald’s rink

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