Gregory McGonigle explains decision to step down as Dublin ladies football boss

He led the team to three All-Ireland finals in a row

BY Raf Diallo 15:40 Wednesday 9 November 2016, 15:40 9 Nov 2016

Gregory McGonigle ©INPHO/Ryan Byrne

Gregory McGonigle has confirmed he is stepping down as Dublin ladies football manager.

The former Monaghan boss took the Dubs to three Leinster titles in a row as well as three All-Ireland finals.

They lost the 2016 All-Ireland final to Cork by the narrowest of margins, with controversy over a disallowed Carla Rowe score.

In a statement McGonigle, said he feels the time is right for a new voice to help this group of players achieve their ultimate goal of winning an All-Ireland title.

They last won the All-Ireland in 2010.

Statement issued on behalf of Gregory McGonigle by Dublin LGFA

I would like to inform you that I have taken the decision not to opt for a fourth term as Dublin Ladies Senior manager.

I have really enjoyed my three years with Dublin but now feel the time is right for a new voice to help this group of players achieve their ultimate goal of winning an All-Ireland title. The time is also right for me personally to take a much needed break from management having been involved at senior level for the past six years and to reflect, recharge and refocus.

I wish to thank Dublin County Board for the opportunity to manage the Dublin senior team and for their continued support, loyalty, trust and friendship over this past three years. Dublin LGFA is fully committed to supporting Dublin teams across all levels in striving for top honours and I wish them continued success.

I would like to thank all of the clubs who provided players to the County panel and who have worked very well with us over the last three years. I am acutely aware how tough it can be on clubs owing to the huge level of commitment that is required of players to play at county level which is similar to that at inter county men's. I hope the juvenile players within your clubs are equally inspired by their female senior stars of today as much as their male counterparts. Mol an óige agus tiocfaidh sí.

I would like to thank everyone involved with the Dublin management team over this past three years. All of whom have been brilliant in working so hard to bring success to Dublin with many having sacrificed numerous personal events within their own life’s for the good of the group. I am honoured to have created friendships over the three years that I know will last a lifetime.

Dublin manager Gregory McGonigle ©INPHO/Donall Farmer

To the group of players, I struggle to find the words to sum up the desire, appreciation and love you have for your county. Genuinely it has been a huge honour to have coached you all and to have gotten to know you as people, most definitely class acts on and off the field.

We shared many great days together and have loads of memories from great journeys starting in 2014. I am disappointed that we could not win the much coveted senior All Ireland but you are closer than ever before and always remember a grain of rice can tip the scale.

In the last three years (2014 – 2016) I would like to think we have continually raised the standards around the senior set up. Especially by putting in place structures that bring young players through to senior level and that these structures will be sustained long into the future.

I was delighted to have been involved in a small way in the winning of three All-Ireland U21 titles, three senior Leinster titles (completing a first five in a row) and reaching three All-Ireland senior finals along with competing in the Counties first NFL division one final back in 2014 along with the many numerous personal accolades our players have received including eight All Star Awards with I’m sure with more to come on the 12th November next.

I strongly believe the amount of big games that this team have played over the past three years will stand to them while developing and strengthening them both mentally and physically in order to finally deliver an All-Ireland title, which I expect them to do in 2017, De réir a chéile a thógtar na caisleáin.

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