GAA Editor @BrianGBarry
Galway's next football manager: Contenders to replace Kevin Walsh
Last Updated: 04/09/19 2:34pm
Kevin Walsh's departure as manager of the Galway footballers has left an exciting vacancy, with no shortage of big names linked to the role.
With the county's minors reaching All-Ireland finals in the last two years, the U21 and U20 sides picking up Connacht titles in 2017 and 2019 respectively, and Corofin winning three of the last five All-Ireland club titles, there are undoubtedly promising signs in the west.
Who will Galway GAA turn to, as they seek their first All-Ireland title since 2001?
A two-time All-Ireland winner as a player, Joyce is a legend within the county. Having moved into management, taking over the county's U20 side this year, he led them to a Connacht title with a six-point provincial final win over Mayo.
He commands wide respect within the county, and could prove a popular choice.
Rochford is currently a selector under Declan Bonner in Donegal, with the ticket already ratified for another year in the Ulster County. However, could the Crossmolina man be tempted with a return to a managerial role after working as a coach in Tír Chonaill?
Rochford is well regarded in Galway after leading Corofin to an All-Ireland title, before leaving to take over Mayo. There, he led them to back-to-back All-Ireland titles and within a whisker of overcoming Dublin in both 2016 and 2017.
With some fans and pundits wanting to see the Tribesmen employ a more attacking game-plan, Rochford could shake up the side.
Another All-Ireland winning player with the western county, Divilly has built his managerial experience at third level. Having led UCD to two Sigerson Cup titles in recent years, he certainly has credentials at a high level.
Along with Joyce, Divilly is believed to be one of the early front-runners for the role.
A selector under Rochford at Corofin for the 2015 All-Ireland triumph, O'Brien then took charge to lead the side to back-to-back titles in 2018 and 2019. They have done so in some style, producing their best football at Croke Park, beating Nemo Rangers and Dr Crokes by a combined 27 points.
The attacking style in which Corofin have gone about their business may appeal to many in Galway football circles.
Cunningham would be an outside bet to land the job, but certainly has the experience. The former Tribe hurling boss took over the Roscommon footballers last year, and brought immediate success with a Connacht title and a respectable Super 8s showing.
Cunningham could potentially become one of the few to manage a county in both hurling and football, although it's not entirely unprecedented, with Seán Boylan and Pat Gilroy being other examples.
Watch Dublin vs Kerry in the All-Ireland final replay live on Sky Sports on Saturday, September 14.