'He's an old friend of mine' - Joyce brings McGuinness in to help Galway training

Donegal’s All-Ireland winning boss took the Tribesmen for a training session yesterday.

GALWAY MANAGER PADRAIC Joyce said that Jim McGuinness’ involvement with the Tribesmen was a one-off session on Sunday but he has not ruled out utilising the former Donegal boss again.

Joyce said he would wait for feedback from the players before deciding if McGuinness was to have further involvement, but he said the initial reaction was very positive.

“Jim is a personal friend of mine and has been for years. I went to college with the man. I’d have huge respect for him, his CV speaks for itself.

“He is a qualified professional performance coach and I fell that the time that we needed a kind of a mental aspect to the game, to kind of get a bit of extra bonus into the players. There is a lot more to training a team than going out on the pitch and just kicking points or just blocking and defending.

“There are a lot of aspects to it. Jim brought a different element yesterday and the lads enjoyed the session as I did.

“We’ll have to wait for the feedback, the session only took place yesterday at 2 o’clock, it was over at 4. We need to do an analysis of the session and a feedback from the player and see what way it’s working.”

Joyce, speaking at a scheduled press conference at the Galway training centre at Loughgeorge as they prepare to play Mayo in the Allianz League on Sunday, was displeased that a video of McGuinness working with the players at Tuam Stadium on Sunday, was used on social media.

“We can’t legislate for a man that’s living in a house behind the pitch recording stuff. It’s unfair on the players that it got out, you’re invading people’s privacy at times doing that, but unfortunately it’s the social media platform and social media world we live in.”

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Joyce and McGuinness won a Sigerson Cup with IT Tralee in 1998 and they have kept in touch ever since.

“He’s an old friend of mine. We were in college together for years. We had plenty of nights out and plenty of craic and plenty of matches together. I know him really, really well. that’s the relationship. I’ve always stayed in touch with him over the year and we have been good friends and close friends.

“I’m always looking to do what I can for the players. My job as Galway manager is to make sure that my players are the best prepared that I possibly can give them. I just felt at this time that we needed some bit of a surge or something.

“The mental aspect in the game is huge nowadays. I just felt that looking round the county he’s in my eyes the best performance coach that’s in the country. He’s been there, he’s done it and he’s very relevant to GAA as you know. He’s won it as a manager himself. I just thought it was a perfect fit, it was a no-brainer for me. It didn’t just fall out of the sky, you know,” he added.

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John Fallon

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