I’ve only now had the chance to have a proper look at Noelle Horan’s stinging criticism of fellow County Board officers which she came out with at the County Convention in Claremorris on Monday night. The outgoing PRO – who failed to receive any nomination to stay in her post for another year – certainly wasn’t holding back and she appears to have reserved most of her ire for County Secretary Sean Feeney. You’ll recall that Feeney himself had a few feisty remarks to make in his annual report to the Convention but none of what he had to say gave any hint about the kind of trouble within the County Board that has now come to light. Noelle’s astonishing broadside certainly leaves no doubt on that score and both Feeney and County Chairman James Waldron were the ones to get it with both barrels from the outgoing PRO in her address to the Convention.
I have to confess that I haven’t the first notion as to what the hell is going on here. At one level, it’s all a bit comical but at the same time, it’s got to be of concern that members of the County Board are willing to air grievances in such a public way with the result that details of what appears to be some kind of internecine warfare amongst them ends up making its way into the national media.
One thing’s for sure: a County Board that’s riven by division and whose members are more concerned with poking each other in the eye than they are with developing Gaelic games within the county is not the kind of County Board that is going to lead us in the direction we all want to be heading in. A prerequisite for success on the field is that everyone – manager, players, supporters and County Board – is all pulling in the same direction and that everyone’s focus remains on the main aim of helping to ensure that the county team performs to the best of its ability.
Noelle Horan’s extraordinary outburst clearly demonstrates that the County Board is far from being a happy camp at the moment. Regardless of who is right or wrong on this issue (and in disputes of this kind, you can be fairly sure that the fault is spread widely enough), the Board owe it to every Mayo supporter to cut out the crap and get their act together pronto.