Davy Fitzgerald unhappy about incident leading to concussion to wing forward John Conlon
But Clare manager admits Cork were the better side
Clare manager Davy Fitzgerald after the defeat to Cork. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho
Clare manager Davy Fitzgerald was a man struggling to contain himself. Unhappy about an incident he said had caused concussion to his wing forward John Conlon – which he maintained a linesman had noticed but could do nothing about – but presumably mindful that his team had played poorly, Fitzgerald said he’d say nothing.
Nonetheless, he couldn’t quite resist fleshing out his discontent a little bit more.
“He’s (Conlon) in hospital - he’s in a bad way now. The Doc was very worried about him at half-time; his blood pressure was up unreal. Would you not think safety of players is the most important thing that’s out there, no matter what?
“Winning and losing games . . . we’ll hurt for a day or two and we’ll get over it but my God, it was brushed under the carpet and it was plain for everybody to see that he was in trouble.
“I talked to him once and I knew, I said it to the lads that we need to get him out of here now. John said leave me two minutes, but I knew he wasn’t right.
“I can’t remember it clearly myself,” he said when asked about the incident,” again, I’m not going to talk about it. But it was the second time - he was got going up along the sideline as well.
“The sideline guy said he knew but he couldn’t say anything to the referee. I think umpires and sideline officials should be used – that’s my honest opinion.”
Adding that he was displeased about more than just the Conlon injury, he indicated that disagreed with the free count and would contact the appropriate authorities before summarising: “The most important thing today, we acknowledge that Cork were the better team and fair play to them.
“They won the game fairly and squarely.”
His Cork counterpart Jimmy Barry-Murphy had a happier task.
After a spring filled with quiet foreboding, relegation, injuries to key players and rumours of discontent in the camp, summer had arrived and with it the end of Clare’s three-match winning
sequence, the most recent of which had consigned Cork to relegation from Division One A.
Morale in Cork
“Thrilled I must say and thrilled for the players in particular morale in Cork hasn’t been good I suppose; the relegation seemed to affect people a lot and the lads have worked very hard since the league relegation play-off here we were trying to peak for today and I think they played very well I am just so proud of the players.
“ . . . there is a lot made about fitness and all of this but we really had geared ourselves this year towards today.
“Last year we were super fit and there’s a huge emphasis among people in the media and people locally about the fitness and the strength and conditioning and I think it is a load of rubbish to be honest with you.
“Dave Matthews (physical coach) did the same as he did last year has done a great job with the players and Ger Cunningham has done a great job with the coaching of the team and I think in fairness there is great credit due to them all.”