Pat O’Shea calls it quits

I see that Pat “in all fairness” O’Shea has decided that, after two years in charge, he’s had enough of the Kerry hot seat.  His ears would have been ringing fairly loudly since Kerry’s All-Ireland final defeat to Tyrone last month: as Colm Keys points out in this article in the Indo, Kerry supporters are a demanding lot and any manager who fails to bring home Sam isn’t regarded very highly.

It’s not for nothing that Paidi famously described the Kerry supporters in the colourful terms that he did, an assessment that in short order cost him his position as Kerry bainisteoir.  The high standards the Kerry lads have was also demonstrated neatly the other day by a poster from the Kingdom on gaaboard.com commenting on the All-Star awards, who, surveying the wreckage of a year that had yielded an All-Ireland defeat and four All-Stars, expressed the opinion that “the sooner this year is over the better”.  Try being a Mayo supporter sometime, pal!

Any manager that delivers a provincial title and an All-Ireland in his two years in charge (compare that, for example, to the record of our own incumbent) cannot be considered a failure but, of course, Pat’s problem was that he won both last year.  This  year he presided over three final losses (a three-in-a-row, if you will) and his side developed an alarming tendency to see large leads surrendered quicker than an ISEQ slump.  Kerry rode their luck all the way to the All-Ireland but in that enthralling last ten minutes of the final, their luck finally ran out as they gave way to a team who on the day were even less inclined to lose than they normally are.

Given the low tolerance levels on the Kerry terraces, Pat is probably right to take his chips from the table at this point.  Who’s next up for the hottest seat on the sideline?  According to the Indo, the smart money could be on this year’s All-Ireland winning U21 boss, Sean Geaney, but he’s not the only one in the running for The Real Biggest Job in Gaelic Football.

10 thoughts on “Pat O’Shea calls it quits

  1. I never rated Pat O Shea anyway. What did he do that differed from the team that he inherited from Jack O Connor? Did he really try anything new? I question a lot of his tactics. Should Brosnan have started the final? What does Darren O Sullivan have to do? Why wasnt Gooch inside working off Donaughy and getting on the end of moves instead of on the half forward line? I could go on.

    I have very little sympathy for Kerry losing this year. They should never have gotten rid of O Connor. It was Jack that first (found) put Donaughy at full-forward. He beat the so called puke football Tyrone went on with and reinvented Kerry football, by reinvigorating the long ball tactic which many other countys and clubs have tried to copy since. O Connor had 2 All-Irelands, 2 national leagues, 2 Munster titles and an AllIreland appearence in 3 years, built a fantastic team and was the ultimate tactician. He tactically tore us apart in the final.

    We may never know the real reasons Jack O Connor left the Kerry job but the feeling and word on the street was that he was pushed which should never have happened. Rant Over.

  2. Jaysus AbbeyGael, when you see it written down, O’Connor did an awsome bit of work all right.
    I wonder if he could be persuaded to take a teaching job in Mayo for a while and look at what could be done with the lads coming through.

    A few of them even have Kerry blood in their veins, so the transition would be a bit easier on that account!

    Keep the Faith!

  3. Abbeygael makes a strong case but the facts are different. O Conner was in trouble after the Munster final of 2006. He had no choice but to gamble on Donaghy at full forward. Lucky for him it worked. I dont recall him ever beating Tyrone and their so called puke football in the championship. He did beat Armagh but so did Wexford and Fermanagh in quarterfinal championship football in the last four years. Some commentaters dont really regard Kerrys last three All Ireland wins as great bearing in mind that it was an anemic Mayo they beat twice and a woeful Cork for the other. This year and indeed in O Conners reign Tyrone shafted them. In my opinion O Shea was a good manager, had Declan O Sullivans shot not been saved by big Pascals toe then O S hea would have been a hero. That is how tight the margin is between a stab in the back and a kick in the butt. By the way we in Mayo are not behind the door shafting All Ireland final managers. There could be a bit of egg on face if Leitrim were to meet us in this years semi final. Blast…I too should be hibernating.

  4. Good to see you’re all still tuning in, lads – only 12 weeks or so now till the FBD gets underway!

    I think both O’Connor and O’Shea rode their luck and their records are comparable enough. Both won soft All-Irelands and both couldn’t handle Tyrone when it really mattered.

    It’ll be tough for whoever comes in now as some of the older players – notably Darragh and maybe a few others – will probably call it a day too. There’s a fair bit of fixing to do, especially in the backs, and putting together a team that really hums could be a tricky enough task for the new manager. Mind you, it’s made a bit easier with all the talent that’ll be at his disposal but the barren years prove that Kerry don’t always get it right. A

  5. The sadness I feel for the stone throwers in Mayo and there are a lot of stones to throw up there.
    It makes me happy to know that there is a reasonable chance that Kerry will be there or there abouts next year even with no manager and it will take a new generation of Mayo players to give Mayo a decent chance of getting to Croke Park. When Tyrone win 2 titles in sucession and understand the effort that it takes to make that happen not to mention Mayo winning one, come back and talk about soft All Irelands.

    I know, maybe Pat O’Shea will move to Mayo and show you how to win an easy one. Best of luck and long live Mayo.

  6. Mike, point well made. I suppose from a Mayomans perspective the All Ireland of 2004 was over after 20 mins and the All Ireland of 2006 was over after ten then its hard to blame us for terming them soft. By doing that we are in no way insulting Kerry, merly acknowledging the gap between the two counties in those two finals. We have to go back to 1977 Dublin v Armagh for a similar debacle and possibly 1978 for Kerrys hammering of Dublin. I have no doubt that Kerry will resurface, equally I have no doubt that we too will resurface. Apart from Kerrys final days appearences we have a good record for big day appearences our selves, actually ahead of Tyrone, Armagh, Dublin, Meath and Galway since 1996.We stand at four since 1996, the above named have ,3,2,0, 3,and 3. Of course the essential difference is that they all won at least one. For sure there are lots of stones in Mayo …but we keep coming back. Actually had Mayo really believed in themselves on Aug 3rd V Tyrone possibly they should have beaten them , more than likely Kerry would be All Ireland champs(soft or hard) and all would be well. We are never too far from the big time either.

  7. We haven’t got medals to count, Mike, so we have to be content with stones!

    Point taken about soft All-Irelands, though in your case, the seeding in Munster (now admittedly discontinued) has guaranteed your place in the last twelve every year. Tyrone and the rest of the Nordies would be very happy if they were assured of such a starting position every single year.

  8. W.J I know it’s only 12 weeks till the FDB but do you know when the fixtures for the national league will be out? Can’t find it anywhere. Cheers and keep up the good work!

  9. The NFL fixtures were published around Halloween last year so I’m assuming that the same will happen this year. Once they’re out, I’ll post them on the site.

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