Saturday 17 March 2018

'I suppose I was f**king Mother Teresa in comparison to Paul Galvin' - Colm Cooper on his demeanour

Colm Cooper, left, and Paul Galvin during their Kerry days
Colm Cooper, left, and Paul Galvin during their Kerry days

Independent.ine Newsdesk

Colm Cooper fired a playful jab at his former Kerry teammate Paul Galvin on Monday after the school teacher-cum-designer said that Cooper would often get away with murder on the pitch.

In an extract from Cooper's upcoming autobiography 'Gooch', Galvin told Cooper that Gaelic Football referees viewed him in a similar light to Roman Catholic nun and missionary Mother Teresa.

"If you asked Galvin, I'd honestly say he'd describe me as one of the dirtiest b**tards he's ever played football with or against," Cooper wrote.

"I'd certainly get away with stuff that he wouldn't. He'd often say it to me. F**k it Gooch, you get away with murder. You absolutely nailed yer man the other day and not a peep from the ref. They all think you're Mother f**kin Teresa!'

"At times I'd wind him up nearly out of badness."

Cooper was on the Ray D'Arcy show on RTE Radio 1 to discuss his autobiography and he revealed that he was always very guarded as a person and that he was often hard on himself and his performances.

"Well I think I was f**king Mother Teresa compared to Paul maybe," Cooper jokingly said when D'Arcy asked him about Galvin's claim.

"He might not like me saying that but I was a very guarded person. I have no problem saying that. I didn't like to let too many people in, even family members.

"That was the way I was. It was a time where there were psychologists coming into the game but I was always Colm, I could always get myself right. I don't need someone to tell me how I am.

"It's my demeanour and who I am but it's just the way I dealt with things. I knew if I had a good game or a bad game. I knew if there was more in me.

"Even at the end of a season I would always look back and say 'okay well out of 10 what would you give yourself?'

"I'd be hard on myself but that drove me. That drove my performance and that drove my standards."

Cooper said that the death of his father Mike in 2006 had a profound impact on his attitude towards Gaelic Football but that playing for Kerry gave him a temporary release from the grief.

"I was trying to get back to normality somewhat," added Cooper.

"I didn't want to play that weekend because I felt I wasn't physically able and mentally I wasn't in the right space. I remember Jack O'Connor calling to my house on Friday night, just to see how I was more than anything else.

"He said 'think about it for the next 24 hours and if you want to play great, and if you don't that's fine.

"I remember my mother coming into me after he left, and this was a league game, where maybe we needed a point or two points to qualify, I'm not quite sure, but my mother said 'dad would like you to play and I think you should play'.

"That's all she really said and she left it with me. I started as a sub on the day and I came on and nearly with the first touch I had I kicked a point, and there was a roar in Killarney that I don't think I'd ever heard before."

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