NOT surprisingly Sion man Martin Gallagher has been appointed the new manager of the Tyrone Premier SuperCupNI team for the next three years.
Gallagher, who guided the Junior team to the semi-finals in 2019 by drawing with Manchester United, among other notable results, only to lose on penalties to a classy Glasgow Rangers team, will again be assisted by Darren Crozier.
Having gone so close back in August and in the interests of continuity, having already developed a relationship with many of the players, it seemed Gallagher was the logical choice to succeed Armagh man David Harvey.
Gallagher, known affectionately as Hen, said he had unfinished business given that his team was a mere kick away from reaching this year’s showpiece final.
Following his appointment Gallagher also insisted that gaining selection onto the under-17 squad would not be a closed shop.
“Of course many of the same players who were involved in the Juniors will move onto the seniors,” he said.
“However we’ll be looking to find a few new ones, perhaps even boys who missed out the last time.
“Players develop at different stages and we’ll be picking players on the here and now and not what they may have done in the past.
“A boy who missed out the last time may have progressed further than a lad who may have been selected in the past.
“In the next few weeks we’ll be getting out and about to make a start on the trial and selection process.”
Gallagher also believes that competing in the Premier section will be much tougher than the Junior.
“It’s a big step up in standard, there is no doubt about that,” he continued.
“You’re coming up against stronger teams from all over the world that can compete with the Premier League academies.
“The players will have to up their game and so will we.”
While Gallagher will take charge of the under-17s the Mountjoy United pair of David Gilfillan and Chris Colhoun have been appointed as joint managers of the Junior team for the next three years.
FULL STORY IN YESTERDAY’S STRABANE CHRONICLE