Pointing The Way: Joe Kernan INPHO/Ryan Byrne
Big Joe

Joe Kernan back in charge of Crossmaglen

Armagh’s 2002 All-Ireland winning boss has taken the reins of his home club’s team.

JOE KERNAN HAS returned to helm of the Crossmaglen Rangers senior football side.

Kernan has been confirmed as the new manager of the Armagh club giants.

He succeeds Tony McEntee and Gareth O’Neill, whose hugely successful reign as joint manager of the club side ended after last month’s All-Ireland club semi-final loss to Roscommon outfit St Brigid’s.

Kernan, who had four sons – Paul, Aaron, Stephen and Tony – on the Crossmaglen Rangers side that were defeated in that game in Mullingar, is in charge for a second spell with his home club.

He previously served between 1993 and 2000 with the South Armagh club and enjoyed great success as he steered the club to four Armagh county senior titles, three Ulster senior club titles and three All-Ireland club titles.

Joe Kernan celebrating Crossmaglen Rangers All-Ireland win in 1999.
Pic: INPHO/Lorraine O’Sullivan

Crossmaglen Rangers county triumph in 1996 was the club’s first in 11 years and that was the start of a four-in-a-row in Armagh under Kernan’s watch. He guided them to their maiden All-Ireland title on St Patrick’s Day 1997 against Mayo outfit Knockmore.

They added to that with All-Ireland club wins in 1999 against Mayo opposition again in Ballina Stephenites and in 2000 against Dublin’s Na Fianna.

Kernan went on to take over as Armagh senior football boss in November 2001 and lead them to their first, and only to date, All-Ireland title in 2002. He also claimed four Ulster senior titles and a National League crown during his tenure with the Orchard County.

Kernan took charge of the Galway senior footballers for the 2010 season but his spell in charge culminated after just one campaign. He has also presided over the fortunes of the Ulster inter-provincial team in recent years.

Kernan will be seeking to guide Crossmaglen to their fourth successive Armagh county senior crown this season.

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