Monday 19 August 2019

Nolan unsure of future

Brendan Furlong

St. James' clubman John Nolan is still awaiting word as to his future role, if any, with Wexford under-age football.

Nolan was in charge of the Wexford Minor footballers who reached the provincial semi-final before bowing out by the narrowest of margins to Louth.

This was achieved following a dismal start to the campaign against Offaly, but the players bounced back through the qualifiers and were desperately unlucky not to have made their way through to the Leinster decider.

In what was his first year in charge, Nolan brought a freshness and professional approach to the side which helped him overcome many obstacles that had led to their dismal opening round showing against Offaly, but enabled them to bounce right back, producing displays that came ever so close to securing a provincial final appearance.

But having bowed out to Louth after a thrilling semi-final at Innovate Wexford Park, Nolan is still in the dark as to his future.

'The County Board has not spoken with me since the Louth game so I don't know if I will have any role next year,' the Dubliner said.

'In 2018 it will be Under-17 and Under-20 but I would love to be involved with the Under-17 set-up. Whenever I speak with County Board there will have to be a few things that will need to be put in place, particularly with our counterparts in Minor hurling, which will be important.

'I would not mind having a chat with the County Board to see what they are wanting now that the age profile is being changed,' Nolan said.

'A lot of people knew what was going on in relation to Minor football, and many people were supportive, commenting that it was time something was done about it. We got to a Leinster semi-final but it could have been so much better.'

Nolan's one regret was the fact that his side failed to make it to Croke Park.

'I was at the provincial final in Croke Park. I was hoping it would be Wexford, as I would have loved them (players) to have played in Croke Park. It would have been a wonderful experience and would have provided the groundwork in the build-up to Under-20.

'It would have helped these players so much, helped to bring them through to Under-20. It would have been another important milestone to have been there. I would love to have given them the experience to have played in Croke Park. It's good to have such an experience as all players want to play in Croke Park.

'That was my main frustration with the Minors, having failed to attain this goal, as it would have been fantastic for the players. Now I hope this group of players go on to Under-20, stay together and progress through to a provincial Under-20 final.

'They were a wonderful group of young lads, who gave it everything, commitment, passion and a delight to wear the county jersey.

'So many contributed to this, the backroom, the parents, it was a wonderful journey that could have been better, as they deserved to have made it through to Croke Park on provincial final day.'

Now Nolan must wait regarding his own future. 'I enjoyed the involvement and would love to take the young footballers on another journey next year,' he added.

Wexford People

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