Davy Fitzgerald emphasises that Clare departure is his own decision as he confirms exit

Departing manager releases statement

Davy Fitzgerald

Image: ©INPHO/Donall Farmer 

Clare GAA have confirmed that senior hurling manager Davy Fitzgerald has informed the county board that he will not be seeking reappointment to the role in 2017.

A statement was due early this afternoon but the expected news that there would be a change of manager was confirmed this evening.

Speculation surrounding Fitzgerald's future intensified on Tuesday night, with Peter O'Connell of The Clare Champion telling Newstalk's Off The Ball that a parting of the ways was "definite".

"One of the greatest privileges of my life has been to manage the Clare Senior Hurling team and I am immensely proud of the success achieved during my time at the helm," said Fitzgerald as Clare confirmed his departure.

"After this year's All-Ireland quarter final defeat to Galway, I was undecided about my future and I indicated as much to the players in the dressing room post-match. In the weeks that followed, I asked the joint captains to ascertain the opinions of the wider panel on whether they would like a change of voice.

"In light of the ensuing meeting and the divided opinions expressed by players, I have decided that it would be in the best interests of Clare hurling that I step down from the role of manager.

"I will cherish the memory of seeing so many happy Clare faces when in 2013 we won what was only the county's fourth All-Ireland title and again in Thurles last May when we were crowned National League Champions for the first time in 38 years. The Clare players were heroes on both days and it is my belief they will lift Liam McCarthy again in the near future.

"I was not asked to step down. The decision is entirely my own. In taking this decision however, I wish to reaffirm my absolute love and passion for Clare hurling."

Fitzgerald led Clare to the 2013 All-Ireland hurling and the 2016 National League titles but championship results since 2013 have not matched the heights of that successful year.

Last night on Off The Ball, O'Connell said: "It's believed we can definitely say that a number of Clare's better players, most influential players wanted change."