Absolutely there shouldn’t be a witch hunt and I don’t think there will be. But I wouldn’t totally agree that walking away was the easier option, I think it can be a very difficult option for guys. If I felt disrespected in a set up I would walk away and that is what guys did. That is a different thing from not respecting the manager has decisions to make. Every player has at some stage been on the wrong end of a managerial decision and on the whole, they accept it. But there was obviously something wrong with how it was been done in this instance for it to have caused such antagonism. As I have been saying for 18 months here, the manager has to manage and the main part of that is bringing the group with him, any eejit can just be a dictator and expect to be followed blindly. But county management has to be about a collegiate type management style because everyone is there as a volunteer.
Daly was interesting on The Sunday Game, he more or less said that it would have been better if the players stuck together and went away as one, or stayed as one. But I think this is where they were all played by Cunningham. He took on young guys who were delighted to have had the chance and had little or no experience of anything else, or he took guys who were only on the periphery and were delighted to get their chance playing. Picking the best team had nothing to do with it, it was about getting a group together that would follow him regardless. And that is where I think Rushe and a few others, who didn’t fall into the above category could have done a bit more to sort things out. But that is just by way of comment, I wouldn’t be apportioning any blame to any young lad who just wants to play county hurling. I would apportion a huge amount of blame to Cunningham, and to a lesser extent to the DCC who made the situation. On the DCC, I do appreciate that they appoint managers and let them manage and in the long term that might be the right thing, no manager will turn away from the job now because they can say the county board don’t have a history of supporting managers. As we can see now, the DCC do it through thick and thin.
Cunningham’s interviews after the game were stunning - he says he didn’t see it coming. How in the hell did he not see it coming. We have put the same sort of team out against Tipp two times before in the league and ended up with a similar result. The only hope we had was that Tipp had gone back a huge amount, but that was a very slim hope. Daly was right, at least half of that team was wrong and that is before you get to the subs (which were particularly mental). It was so incredibly wrong and stupid that there is no way that the main agenda there was to win the game. It was either about teaching the players a lesson or something more devious altogether. Something was very very wrong in how that team was selected and personally I think it warrants more of an investigation then just getting rid of the manager.
But apart from that, it is over now and on we go. I think 2018 could actually be ok with the right man in charge!