Down Forum

Down senior footballers 2016 aspirations?

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Replying To Londoncalling:  "Eamon won,t ask Pete back. If he did he may as well stand down as it would be an admission he was the wrong appointment. The county board wouldn't either as similarly they would undermine Eamon,s credibility and an admission they also got it wrong. The more pressing issue is why we have a team of players who are unavailable. No one could have done anything with the group that was available. There needs to be some analysis carried out by the board why so many players are opting out. But they won't. So next year in Div 2. This time next year will be another post mortem why another early exit from championship. And search will commence for another new manager. Pete won,t be asked to come back And board will carry on a clueless and as unaccountable as ever."
Yeah you would be right ,,,,
Think what we need to do is get a few of our 91 team on board with the devolvepment squads ! What's your thoughts??

topdownfan (Down) - Posts: 555 - 14/07/2016 21:46:16    1883505

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Replying To topdownfan:  "Yeah you would be right ,,,,
Think what we need to do is get a few of our 91 team on board with the devolvepment squads ! What's your thoughts??"
Difficult to keep track of things from London and what is going on at all levels in the county. Can,t be a bad thing to have proven winners involved in underage development whether from 91 or 94. Isn,t P O'Rourke already involved? I would hope that the County would have the sense to follow the blueprint of those counties who already have successful development system's in place. My only concern about development squad's they leave a lot of lads out of that system. As long as the clubs also get the opportunity to avail of regular high quality coaching I wouldn't be opposed to development squad's.From over hear reading papers looking at comments on forums as long as you have a county board focused and committed with the appropriate resources well funded to develop and sustain a commitment to ongoing development of youth football. Not sure that is there for senior team never mind underage. My immediate concern would be to stabilise the current crisis in senior football ensuring whatever it takes that players of county ability make themselves available for selection would dearly love to know why so many players are making themselves unavailable.

Londoncalling (Down) - Posts: 9 - 15/07/2016 14:32:23    1883864

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Some questions for Down supporters to mull over.

Was the Down county board correct to ratify Eamonn Burns as manager for another season despite winning no league or championship matches?

Does Eamonn Burns need to stick with the same squad as this season? Or does he start from scratch?

We can talk about Down football's problems until the cows come home. But lets put a little focus on the here and now. Next season is already looking ominous for us. Division 2 will be very tricky with teams like Clare and Derry improving and evidently better than us on present form. Is another relegation on the cards?

MourneArmy (Down) - Posts: 1787 - 16/07/2016 17:43:49    1884296

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You can talk about development squads and underage structures all you like but if players that are produced don't stay on board at county level what would be the point in any case?

Here is the 2005 all ireland winning minor team

M McAllister; G Magee, C Garvey, H Magee; G McCartan, E McConville, K Duffin; J Colgan, P Fitzpatrick; D Lavery, M Clarke, S Grant; C Brannigan, R Kelly, P McCumiskey

I make it these guys are 28/29 now, and yet a sum total of 0 of them were involved last year's in the Down panel.

We need to be clear that, in the modern era, we have 2 very serious problems in Down

1. A poor underage football structure
2. A poor adult football structure

However we also need to clear that these problems are largely distinct. You can't address #1 and assume that it will eventually fix problem # 2.

Therefore we need establish a top class senior set up, as I believe we had under James McCartan, as soon as possible.

Otherwise we will just keep on losing more and more of whatever good players we have year on year, as we have done since McCartan stood down.

However the county board seem to think it is fine to park the problem of good senior management for now.

I can only assume they are retaining Burns in order to avoid themselves the embarrassing struggle of replacing him.

You have to say things look pretty bleak at this point. Its Division 4 level football we should fear as it looks to me that Down are fast joining Antrim, well adrift of the other Ulster Counties,

spiritof1991 (Down) - Posts: 693 - 16/07/2016 20:38:42    1884372

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That's true to a degree spirtof1991 that we shouldn't assume that fixing underage would automatically fix the senior football problem but it makes it a lot more likely. We can't go on the way we're going and you can't start from senior level you need to start from the bottom and work your way up. Kerry, Dublin, Tyrone have all done it and it works. We need to address what needs to be done instead of just complaining about it.

Firstly, what about the supporters coming together for a public meeting? Holding our county board to account and see exactly what the situation is from managing regimes to financial status of Down. These are the type of things we are kept in the dark about. Things need to be transparent and the down supporters need to be unanimous in their support to wanting to bring Down forward collectively as a county. Should we be putting pressure on the county board to call a meeting? Should we be doing it ourselves? Should our heroes of 91/94 step in? We need action to be taken and the supporters need to be the ones taking it.

Secondly, we recognise that underage is a problem? Why? Because of the structure. At the minute we have 40+ members on a panel - it's ludicrous! We can't even provide them with buses to matches and kits. Where has our sense of pride gone? Why is it a financial strain to now play for the county with the development squads? Where is the money going that is given to down for the development squads? Forget giving all clubs a fair deal and having a few players from every club, if we want to produce results we need 30 elite players who we focus on and nurture. We need people in charge that players respect and look up to. No disrespect to the lads there they're doing their bit for the cause but are they motivating the boys enough? Are they people our development squads look up to with admiration and passion? Simply, no.

Related to that point - I attended an event in Drumaness with the 91 team. I talked to a few of them and the conversation was centred around how we move down forward and what struck me was that these former players have plans, have willingness, have the expertise and have the passion - yet they said they haven't been asked by the county board to get involved and therefore haven't, and some of those who have showed an interest have been turned away. Surely, these are the lads we need involved, they truly are the elite of the county haven't they the medals to prove it!! So why aren't we getting these lads on board? Why aren't we giving lads role models? We talk about the 'Down way', the 91 lads willing to get involved are the epitome of the down way - why are we so afraid to go back to basics and build from scratch?

Bottom line, we've done enough moaning about it, what about some action? What about a bit of scrutiny? What about a bit of camaraderie and striving to put pride back into dawning the red and black jerseys? Change isn't always bad, the nature and demands of the game have change and so must Down if they wish to keep up, one things for sure if we don't come together to alter things, they're only going to get worse.

topdownfan (Down) - Posts: 555 - 16/07/2016 23:25:05    1884476

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You make a really good point TDF. I don't know if Down have a PRO. You hear nothing from the County Board about anything. Good as it is it's not right that someone like me living in London should have to rely on a forum to know what's going on within the county.

Londoncalling (Down) - Posts: 9 - 18/07/2016 11:28:47    1885367

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topdownfan I'd support that idea of a fans' meeting. I think that's a great idea. The fact of the matter is that the County Board aren't put under any pressure to actually answer any of the questions raised on this forum. Get organising!

peter_venkman (Down) - Posts: 320 - 22/07/2016 11:24:57    1888096

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Did Antrim not do this at the start of the season? Not sure it has got them anywhere either

grandagrokepoke (Down) - Posts: 347 - 22/07/2016 15:48:14    1888263

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Some good points made above.

I also like the idea of a supporters meeting.

But lets be honest, this isn't going to happen. Is it just me or is there still a lack of appetite from within the county for change? Especially from those in a position of authority to exact change.

This season was a disaster and yet where are the critics? Hiding?

MourneArmy (Down) - Posts: 1787 - 25/07/2016 13:28:29    1889686

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Well done Tipp,and Clare give a good account of themselves unlucky not too score at least one goal.
These two counties are more famous for the small ball game,just goes too show what can happen,especially in Tipperary's case when the County board is prepared too invest time,training coaches,faith,and patience ...most of all the players wanting too represent their county,Tipperary were a breath of fresh air yesterday,would love them too reach final...then who knows

dunmaguire (Down) - Posts: 74 - 01/08/2016 13:56:19    1893497

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Went to watch the Matches in newry Sunday evening, that number 11 from Saul Cathal Arnold give an exhibition on good football , his fielding , score taking all top quality, Game was in the melting pot and he stepped up to hit a free from all off 40 yard and close to the sideline !!! Surely this lad has to be called up for the Diwn squad !!!

topdownfan (Down) - Posts: 555 - 03/08/2016 13:04:17    1894704

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Replying To topdownfan:  "Went to watch the Matches in newry Sunday evening, that number 11 from Saul Cathal Arnold give an exhibition on good football , his fielding , score taking all top quality, Game was in the melting pot and he stepped up to hit a free from all off 40 yard and close to the sideline !!! Surely this lad has to be called up for the Diwn squad !!!"
I believe he scored 0-8, according to Down GAA on Facebook.

I've heard about him before, definitely worth a place in the McKenna cup squad.

By the way, why the hell were Saul playing in Newry? A bit of a trek for them.

MourneArmy (Down) - Posts: 1787 - 04/08/2016 17:08:07    1895748

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Back from London for the weekend. Watched the 2 Friday games at Newry. Only players that impressed me where Aidan Carr and Harry McConville who came on as sub and turned game. The football was awful. So defensive.Ridilculoius watching club games with 15 players behind half way line. It's club football. Won,t name club one episode must have played 35/40 hand passes behind own 45. Didn,t see anybody catch couple of balls above their head or kick pass a ball 30 yards. Not gaelic football. Game is dead as Gaelic football. It is somwe hybrid I don't recognise.

Londoncalling (Down) - Posts: 9 - 04/08/2016 22:47:15    1895939

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Cathal Arnold from Saul ? for the county? give him a go in McKenna cup, if he is not tried we will never know, and the same goes for Mick Magee from RGU, any others?

an dun abu (Down) - Posts: 88 - 11/08/2016 17:37:08    1900020

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