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Report: Jim McGuinness In Contention For Finn Harps Job

Report: Jim McGuinness In Contention For Finn Harps Job
Eoin Harrington
By Eoin Harrington
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Donegal Gaelic football legend Jim McGuinness is reportedly in the mix to take the vacant managerial role at League of Ireland club Finn Harps.

McGuinness, who played on Donegal's 1992 All-Ireland winning side, and managed the 2012 All-Ireland champions, has committed to a career as a soccer coach, as he works his way through UEFA's coaching badges.

After brief spells in Scotland, China, and the USA, it looks as though his biggest opportunity yet could be on the horizon, with Finn Harps supposedly considering McGuinness to replace Ollie Horgan in the hot seat.

Jim McGuinness shock contender for Finn Harps post

Daniel McDonnell of the Independent reported on Thursday morning that Jim McGuinness was being considered for the Finn Harps manager job, after Ollie Horgan's departure at the end of the 2022 season.

Horgan left the club by mutual agreement after they closed out a disappointing season with a 2-0 loss to Drogheda United. Finn Harps' statement on Horgan's departure read:

During Ollie’s tenure the club has earned promotion to the Premier Division twice, and has spent six of his nine years in charge competing in the top flight.

From reaching an FAI Cup Semi-Final in his first season, to securing the club’s best league finish in over twenty years in 2020, the past nine seasons have seen many a magic night at both Finn Park and around the country.

Everyone at the club wishes to thank Ollie for his dedication, tireless work ethic and success during his time at Finn Park.


Despite the good will toward Horgan, his former side will now ply their trade in the First Division next season, after relegation with just 20 points. Jim McGuinness could well be the man tasked with steadying the ship and bringing them back to the Premier Division.

The former Gaelic football player and coach made the transition to soccer coaching as part of Neil Lennon's backroom staff at Celtic, mere months after leading Donegal to the 2012 All-Ireland football title.


Jim McGuinness coaching


1 January 2019; Coaches, from left, Stephen Rice, Republic of Ireland assistant coach Robbie Keane, former Canada international Jimmy Brennan and Charlotte Independence head coach Jim McGuinness during the FAI UEFA Pro Licence course at Johnstown House in Enfield, County Meath. Photo by Seb Daly/Sportsfile

His aspirations with his adopted form of football have grown since, and he has taken on assistant coaching and managerial roles in Ireland, China, and the USA in recent years. He was linked with the vacant Dundalk managerial role in 2020, but turned down the opportunity.


Finn Harps could be the job that tantalises Jim McGuinness into making the move into League of Ireland management, but fans can be certain McGuinness will think through the opportunity before taking it.

In an interview with Donegal Live last week, he said:

The soccer journey is alive - the League of Ireland season is finished now, so we’ll see what happens on that front. I’ll see what is possible outside of the country as well.

I’m always waiting for the right opportunity. It needs to be the right opportunity. I won’t just jump into a job.

With approaches from the likes of Dundalk, and experience with the likes of Celtic, it's clear that Jim McGuinness is well respected in the world of football coaching - and it will be intriguing to see if Finn Harps does ultimately become the job he will "jump into".

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