'It's alien to Kerry' - Tomás Ó Sé explains why Kerry would be wrong to use a sweeper system
Tomás Ó Sé thinks that Eamonn Fitzmaurice would be wrong to employ a sweeper with Kerry despite Galway creating a number of goal chances during last Sunday's All-Ireland quarter-final.
Kerry goalkeeper Brian Kelly was called upon on a number of occasions to deny the Tribesmen, and although the Kingdom's rearguard ultimately kept Galway goalless, the number of opportunities allowed will worry Fitzmaurice ahead of the All-Ireland semi-final.
Speaking on this week's episode of The Throw-In, Independent.ie's GAA podcast, Tomás Ó Sé shared his theory as to why Kerry have been opened up so regularly in this year's championship, pointing to the role centre back Tadhg Morley has been occupying so far this summer.
"We were open at the back again," Ó Sé said of Kerry's win over Galway.
"The theory I have on it, it happened against Clare, it happened against Cork and now it happened against Galway. Kerry don't play a sweeper, and Tadhg Morley, more often than not, in the Munster final he had a man-marking job and yesterday he had a man-marking job and he goes with them and the middle is not guarded as such.
"What you are depending on then is your half forward line and midfield to actually tackle and work hard and track the men and the runs coming forward. More often than not, it will work, but if you go long and bypass the middle third, then there are gaps at the back. That is what Fitzmaurice will take from it."
The use of a sweeper system has been a very divisive issue in hurling recently, and Ó Sé doesn't think it would serve Kerry well, even if teams have been making ground through the heart of their defence.
"I don't think so, no, I think it's alien to Kerry to play a sweeper," he said.
"Sometimes the sweeper gets lost.
"I don't think it suits Kerry. I think Kerry have enough footballers and they have a very hard working half forward line and a hard working midfield. Their backline is settled and there are no big names going out or in.
"It's certainly an area where Fitzmaurice will be looking at and there's no doubt after the Cork game they looked at it and tried to figure it out. I do think that Morley, if he is doing man to man, can't be blamed for not being in the middle of the Kerry defence."
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