Sunday 25 February 2018

Murphy: Flynn taught me so much...he will come good

Donegal's Michael Murphy. Photo: Sportsfile
Donegal's Michael Murphy. Photo: Sportsfile
Donnchadh Boyle

Donnchadh Boyle

Donegal captain Michael Murphy has revealed he "learned a hell of a lot" from Dublin's Paul Flynn in terms of preparation and has backed the Fingallians man to produce a "massive" performance in Saturday's All-Ireland semi-final replay.

Flynn's patchy form has been the subject of much discussion since the drawn game but Murphy, who lived with Flynn when they both attended DCU, expects Jim Gavin to stick with the four-time All-Star when he names his team later this week.

"I learned a hell of a lot from him in Dublin in terms of how he structures his whole life between football and work and everything," Murphy said.

"He's just a mad Dublin player, follower, everything. There will be no fella that wants to play better than he does. . . a lot of the time you are not that far away (from finding form).

"It's a break of a ball, it's a touch of something. And you can guarantee there's no player working harder on his game at the moment than him.

"There's no player working harder on his game than Aidan O'Shea, Bernard Brogan, Ciaran Kilkenny or whoever you want to say. It takes very little to tip the scales in favour for you, and if it does go your way like everything it will come in twos, threes and fours.

"You just need to keep believing in yourself - he is there for a reason.

"People are speaking about it for a reason - it's because of the levels that have been obtained over the last number of years. He just wants to get back to them.

"He's been a mainstay there and I still expect him to play. I would back him to have a massive and very influential game on the next day out, as likewise I would with. . . the speculation has been around Bernard Brogan/Paul Flynn but I would still expect both to play and both to have very good games."

Murphy revealed his admiration for Flynn's desire to work on every aspect of his game.

"His commitment he brought to all aspects of his life was something that was huge," he explained.

"Even going to lectures and things like that where you might have thought 'I might be able to nip away with this one', but he was always there at it, so there was a bit of guilt there.

"That transferred onto his game in terms if just wanting to improve his kicking, wanting to improve his shooting, tackling - everything. He was just wanting to improve, and it just wasn't going to training for the sake of going to training.

"That was another thing - there was a focus for that training session to go and do.

"I remember going out with him kicking on the astro-turfs and what not and it was just kicking for that hour, and that was to tick that box and improve that thing, so everything you were doing was very focused.

"If you were going to a lecture or going to the library to do an essay it was to do one particular thing, whereas sometimes you can get side-tracked wanting to do five or six things at the one time.

"That's something to my own training I've tried to bring to and I think it could leave a lot of people in good stead."

Irish Independent

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