Gavin ready to deal with capital expectations


DUBLIN FOOTBALL:NEWLY-APPOINTED Dublin manager Jim Gavin could have been forgiven for throwing his county chairman a raised eyebrow yesterday as Andy Kettle said right out of the gate that he expected him “to at least repeat the feats of the previous management”.

But Gavin, who won an All-Ireland as a roving half-forward for Dublin in 1995 and who has taken the county’s under-21s to two of the last three All Irelands, is under no illusions as to what he’s let himself in for in his new post.

“It’s something I have to deal with. Having played with Dublin for 10 seasons and being involved in some great highs and some terrible lows as well. I’ve been involved with the 21s for six years and the expectation within the capital is always there.

“I’m very comfortable with it. I know exactly what the expectation is on me as a manager and what I need to produce as a manager. It doesn’t faze me at all.

“In fact, I particularly revel in that type of environment, that kind of pressure environment – in my career outside of GAA as well.

“Success isn’t just an accident, it’s something that you need to work on. There’s pressure in your day job, and pressure as a sportsman as well. It gives me a particular focus anyway.”

Gavin announced that his backroom team will be made up of selectors Declan Darcy, Mick Deegan and Shane O’Hanlon and he also confirmed that physical trainer Michael Kennedy will be joining up, having previously been involved with the Dublin hurling team.

He intends to bring some fresh faces into the senior set-up from the under-21s and if that means moving on some of the established names already there, he won’t have any hesitation.

“It’s pretty straightforward. The players that perform will be on the squad, and the players that aren’t performing at a particular time won’t be.

“For example, in the under-21 final this year, we had a guy Paul Maguire from St Jude’s who missed most of the season, but played particularly well in a club game. And I brought him in and he played in the All-Ireland final.

“That’s the way I see it. Players who are in form play and players who are out of form, you try and get them back in the system. If it isn’t working, the next man steps up because there’s plenty of talent, that’s for sure, in the county.

“I would like to see teams that play with humility. I’ll expect that from them. I’ll expect a disciplined approach from all the players, both on and off the field.

“I’ll expect the players will play with passion, but with discipline and respect for all officials. And I’ll expect them to go out there and express themselves.”

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