The Donegal County Board have confirmed on Friday night that former Mayo manager Stephen Rochford will join Declan Bonner’s backroom team for 2019 as coach.
Rochford stepped away from his role as Mayo senior football boss after Mayo failed to make is past the quarter final stages (Super 8 phase). Indeed that was Mayo’s earliest exit in the championship since 2010, it has to be said though he was on the wrong side of two All-Ireland defeats in 2016 and 2017 losing to Dublin by just 1 point on both occasions. Rochford will replace former Donegal centre back Karl Lacey who decided to step away from the job owing to family commitments. In addition Anthony McGrath and John McElhome have also left the Donegal backroom team setup, Aaron Kyle’s however comes in to replace them for the new season.
Speaking to RTE Radio Sport former Donegal forward and current RTE Sport Radio Analyst Brendan Devenney said “I didn’t expect this, it’s a strange one from a Donegal perspective, but even more so for himself probably”. He went on to say It’s a big coup for Donegal and Declan Bonner.
It will be a massive addition now for Donegal who look to build this year after a good first year under Declan Bonner. They have superb players, mixed with youth and experience, Michael Murphy, Odhran Mac Niallais, Ryan McHugh just some of the top high profile players they have in their armour.