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Horan a big hit with female fans

Sport

Horan a big hit with female fans


Mike Finnerty

AS you can probably imagine there are plenty of perks to being the manager of the Mayo senior football team.
There’s the prestige, the honour, the fame (without the fortune, unfortunately), and the opportunity to lead the most high profile group of athletes in the county in pursuit of excellence and titles.
Another less obvious aspect of what goes with the territory, it seems, are copious amounts of letters from middle-aged women. Or females aged between 50 and 70 specifically.
That’s according to James Horan, anyway, who told The Mayo News last week during the course of a long conversation that he can’t believe (or understand, to be honest) just why so many ladies of that particular vintage have put pen to paper to him over the last few months.
Horan laughed and shook his head as he recalled the large number of envelopes that arrived at his home in Breaffy since Mayo lost the All-Ireland Final in September. Each and every one of them were in support of his efforts during the 2013 season, and encouraging him and Mayo to go again.
Our guess is that he may have succeeded the likes of Paul Claffey, Michael Commins or Billy Fitzpatrick of Mid West Radio as the new ‘Housewives ,Favourite’ among ladies of a certain age profile in the county!
Horan, who celebrates his 42nd birthday next month, also delivered one of his infamous withering ‘one-liners’ when we asked if there was any chance of former Donegal coach Rory Gallagher being a Mayo selector in 2014.
“Absolutely zero,” he smiled. “Can there be any less [chance] than zero?” We’ll take that as a ‘no’ then!
There is no doubt that James Horan is one of the most complex and deep-thinking individuals that has ever managed Mayo.
But last Tuesday evening in Westport he also gave a fascinating insight into the world of intercounty management.
The focus, the attention, the speculation and the rumours are a constant companion in the role, and Horan is well aware that most people with an opinion on his ability to do the job feel that they could manage Mayo too.
We’re not so sure, but the big question now is would they be capable of triggering ‘fan mail’ from middle-aged women?