Lone sour note: Donegal boss has reporter removed
The solitary sour note left on Donegal’s All-Ireland victory came after the game when Jim McGuinness refused to begin his post-match press conference until Belfast Telegraph reporter Declan Bogue was removed from the room.
Bogue is the author of the book This Is Our Year that caused controversy last winter when it led to Kevin Cassidy being excluded from the Donegal panel. McGuinness then went on to explain that he had kept his counsel on his feelings about the book all year and had waited until now to make them known.
“There was a book written,” he said. “There were a lot of untruths in the book. There was a lot of things said about me. I’ve never broken court on it since the whole thing happened. I’ve held my dignity. I’ve let myself be castigated. And I done that because I gave somebody an agreement that I wouldn’t break my court on it. There were a lot of things said in the book that were incorrect and untrue, some of it possibly lies about me personally and about some of my players.
“It was all-out attack for a couple of months on my character. I know what I’ve done, I know what I’ve coached, I know what I am as a person. And that’s the situation. So I’m not going to let somebody sit in a room and fill their pages tomorrow on the back of what we done today when they in their wisdom degraded me as a person and some of my players.”
McGuinness’s trenchant stance has caused surprise among people who have read the book, as it paints him in an overwhelmingly positive light. He didn’t expand yesterday on what he sees to be the untruths contained in the book but he was clearly extremely angry, not just about the book itself but the media coverage that followed its publication.
“Once things are printed in the media, it’s out there. Doesn’t matter if he turns around and 24 hours or three weeks or three months later and apologises.
“The people who read it have made their mind up. The people who read that document have a concept in their head about me and personal issues with me and certain situations with my players that cannot be changed. That’s why I held my court.
“That’s the bottom line on it. I’m not going to be saying one thing and doing another. He’s left the room. I’ll answer any other questions.”
Bogue declined to comment on his exclusion last night.