McManus won't be coming back for Offaly
21:34, 16 May 2012
Ciaran McManus will not be coming out of inter-county retirement to line out for the Offaly footballers this summer, according to new manager Tom Coffey.
Coffey opened discussions with McManus in a bid to get him involved ahead of Offaly's Leinster SFC opener against Kildare on Saturday, June 16.
But the Tubber clubman, who retired last November, told him that he could not give the required commitment as the Faithfuls look to rediscover their best form.
Coffey told the Tullamore Tribune: "He was unable to commit. It would be very unfair to give a 36-year-old three weeks' training ahead of the Kildare game.
"He needs to be protected as well, after all the great games he has played for Offaly."
McManus played senior football for Offaly between 1996 and 2011. The former Ireland International Rules player was a Leinster SFC winner in 1997 and ended his career with Division 1 and 2 honours (1998 and 2004).
Speaking to Midlands 103 last year, the powerful midfielder-cum-forward said: "After so many years, it's probably the right time to stop playing.
"With a new management coming in. a new management would have a two to three-year programme. If I was to add three years to where I am now I would be nearly 40!
"I played reasonably well last season and was happy enough the way it finished up personally, but obviously disappointed with how Offaly finished up."
McManus' final appearance came in Offaly's All-Ireland qualifier defeat to Limerick last July and since then they have seen two managers step down - Tom Cribbin and Gerry Cooney.
Thomas Deehan from Clara is also unable to commit to Coffey's current squad and has turned down an offer to return.
However, Offaly will be able to call on the services of John Reynolds, Richie Dalton, Niall Smith and Ross Brady for their Championship campaign.
Their preparations have included a 0-16 to 0-14 loss to Laois in a challenge game last week, during which Rhode's Mark Dunne impressed with a four-point haul from centre forward.