BY CHRIS MCNULTY
A SHORT-LIST of candidates will be spoken to this week in a second round of interviews for the vacant manager’s position at Finn Harps.
The Donegal News understands that Don O’Riordan, Joe Boyle and Sean McGowan have all been invited back for a second interview, though the exact number has not been divulged by the club.
Ten applicants were interviewed over the past two weeks for the position, vacant since the departure of Peter Hutton just before the end of the 2013 season.
A three-man selection committee of Aidan Campbell, John Campbell and James Rogers interviewed the candidates, with the successful applicants now set for a second interview, to be conducted by the whole Board of Directors.
The Board has not commented on the matter with the cards kept close to their chests. However, O’Riordan, Boyle and McGowan are believed to have got past round one and will be spoken to again.
Ballybofey man McGowan was the first man to declare an interest. He was assistant to Hutton and was caretaker for the end of the season. Having filled the caretaker role previously and having been involved in the club in various guises over the last few decades McGowan is not short of admirers in the corridors of power down Navenny Street.
Former Galway United and Sligo Rovers boss O’Riordan is based in China, but had contact with Harps via Skype and is said to have impressed the selection committee. A source close to O’Riordan said last night that the 56-year old was still in the running and would have further discussions this week.
“Don would relish the chance to manage Harps,” he said. “He wants to involve himself in fundraising, attracting sponsors and basically working on the commercial side as well as the football side.”
Annagry man Boyle is seen as a dark horse and is believed to have been a very impressive interviewee. A former Republic of Ireland Under 17 manager who is a locally-based former Harps player, Boyle ticks a lot of boxes and is known to have a number of admirers at Finn Park.
Harps are expected to announce a new manager next week.