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'I was very surprised at Paul, he kept that quiet' - Kerry legends move into Leinster roles

Paul Galvin and Jack O’Connor will take charge of Wexford and Kildare respectively next year.

Darran O'Sullivan has backed his former Kerry team-mate to succeed with Wexford
Darran O'Sullivan has backed his former Kerry team-mate to succeed with Wexford
Image: James Crombie/INPHO

DARRAN O’SULLIVAN SOLDIERED for long enough on the pitch with Paul Galvin and came under the guidance of Jack O’Connor during two different spells in his Kerry career.

If the trio were consumed then by Kerry football and their local battles in Munster, the focus will shift for those compatriots of O’Sullivan next season as they enter the Leinster landscape.

Earlier this month it was confirmed that Galvin and O’Connor are to be put forward for ratification respectively by the Wexford and Kildare county boards to take charge of their senior outfits for the 2020 season.

Galvin’s move surprised O’Sullivan but O’Connor’s established links to Kildare through his sons made that appointment easier to forecast.

The Glenbeigh-Glencar club man believes both can be successful in their roles.

“I was very surprised at Paul, he kept that quiet. I’d be chatting to Paul fairly regularly, he kept that quiet. I was surprised but I think it’ll be good.

“Not going into management, just that it came out of the blue. I heard nothing of it, next thing it was Paul Galvin is taking it.

“He’s a very intelligent guy, obviously passionate about football, and he thinks in a really interesting way about it tactically. He’s just sharp. Just interesting to see what type of team he gets around him. So that’ll be good.

“Jack to Kildare, probably wasn’t as surprising. Obviously he has connections up there with the two boys playing above there. I think he’d prefer to be in the Kerry dressing room.

“But he’s a fierce football man, I’ve good time for Jack. I think it’s a great call for Kildare to be honest. People probably will say here were a couple of internal candidates that would be good as well, but I think if Jack O’Connor’s available you have to go with Jack.”

eanna-oconnor-celebrates-with-jack-oconnor-and-cian-oconnor-17122017 Jack O'Connor celebrates with his sons Eanna and Cian after the 2017 Leinster senior club football final. Source: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

After his work with Kerry underage sides in recent seasons, there had been speculation that O’Connor could be in line for a third stint in charge of the Kingdom senior side.

“Maybe he was thinking about it on down the line,” stated O’Sullivan.

“When Kerry appointed Peter (Keane) it was for the next number of years. Jack’s not the type to sit on his hands and wait around. Obviously Kildare is an exciting proposition, maybe a small bit under the radar in the last couple of years, but good potential.”

aib-launch-the-toughest-temptation Darran O'Sullivan was speaking today at the launch of AIB's new short film The Toughest Temptation. Source: David Fitzgerald/SPORTSFILE

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Fintan O'Toole

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