O’Dempsey’s have appointed Eoin Kearns as their new senior football manager ahead of the 2021 season.
The Ballyroan-Abbey native takes the reins following the departure of the existing management team of Francis Finn, Rods Behan, Sean Cotter and Nigel Pearson following O’Dempsey’s senior championship quarter final defeat to Portarlington back in October.
Kearns brings a wealth of experience to the role having been involved at club and inter-county level for the last number of years.
The 36-year-old previously coaches Sarsfields Ladies to Laois and Leinster championship glory before having a spell as player/manager with Ballyroan-Abbey.
He then took charge of Arles-Killeen in 2017 where they reached the quarter finals only to be beaten by Portarlington – the third time the sides had clashed that year after initially meeting in a Round 1 game that required a replay.
Before and in between that, Kearns also spent some years working with underage squads in Laois and has been involved in the recent minor successes that Ballyroan-Abbey have enjoyed.
But since 2018, Kearns has been a selector with the Laois senior footballers.
He spent two years under John Sugrue, where promotion from Division 4 and 3 in the league was achieved, before remaining in the role under Mike Quirke.
But it is believed that he will not be seeking to continue in this position for the 2021 season.
As a player, Kearns was full back on the Ballyroan-Abbey Gaels team which won the senior championship in 2006.
Kearns’ new management team is also in place. Brendan Behan, Adrian Dunne and Odhran Gallagher will act as selectors while Mick Cahill will continue as kitman.
Brendan Behan successfully managed the junior ‘A’ team to the championship in 2019 and was in charge of the intermediate side that reached the quarter finals of that competition this year.
Adrian Dunne has been deeply involved with O’Dempsey’s underage teams for the last number of year’s. He was manager of the junior ‘C’ team last year that was unlucky to lose in the semi final of the championship.
Donegal man Odhran Gallagher lives locally and recently transferred to the club. Odhran played with the junior and intermediate teams last year.
Gallagher is a teacher in Killenard primary Scoil Naomh Eoin. He is heavily involved in the school appeal to raise funds for a much needed Astro Turf pitch to allow kids exercise outdoors in the winter months.
Elsewhere, there are a few Laois senior clubs who are on the hunt for a new manager.
Courtwood, who survived relegation this year following the final against Arles-Kilcruise, are seeking a new boss after Gary Kavanagh departed.
While The Heath, beaten quarter finalists this year, are also seeking a new manager as Michael McNamee has left to join Offaly senior side Bracknagh.