Monday 23 October 2017

'Prophet' McGrath haunts his own land

Fermanagh manager Pete McGrath Photo by Philip Fitzpatrick/Sportsfile
Fermanagh manager Pete McGrath Photo by Philip Fitzpatrick/Sportsfile
Martin Breheny

Martin Breheny

In August 2015, Jim McCorry unloaded himself of some straight talking following his resignation as Down football manager after one season in charge.

Four months earlier, he had steered the county to Division 1 but following championship defeats by Derry (one point) and Wexford, unrest swept down from the Mournes.

In what was scarcely a vote of confidence, McCorry survived on a 22-20 county board vote but quit because he felt he had lost the support of the executive.

"It unravelled because people focused on one bad day and didn't see the bigger picture. We had a three-year plan to try and win an Ulster title, which was a realistic aim, but people looked only at the present," he said.

McCorry, who had previously managed Armagh, was replaced by Eamonn Burns, an All-Ireland medal winner with Down in 1991 and 1994.

He has yet to preside over a single win from 10 league and championship games, the latest defeat coming last Saturday night when Down were demolished by Fermanagh in Newry.

The big defeat would have been all the harder to take for the Down public since it was plotted by Pete McGrath, the man who steered the county to the All-Ireland successes in the 1990s. So what's he doing with Fermanagh?

A great job actually so, despite being keen, why didn't he get a second stint with Down at some stage?

A prophet in his own land and all that perhaps.

Irish Independent

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