Sunday 21 October 2018

'They have backed themselves into a corner' - Ex-Mayo manager not a fan of Kildare's negotiation strategy

11 March 2018; Kildare manager Cian O'Neill speaks to his team ahead of the Allianz Football League Division 1 Round 5 match between Kildare and Mayo at St Conleth's Park in Newbridge, Kildare. Photo by Daire Brennan/Sportsfile
11 March 2018; Kildare manager Cian O'Neill speaks to his team ahead of the Allianz Football League Division 1 Round 5 match between Kildare and Mayo at St Conleth's Park in Newbridge, Kildare. Photo by Daire Brennan/Sportsfile

Former Mayo manager John Maughan says that Kildare are right to stand up for their right to host Saturday's round three qualifier in Newbridge - but doesn't think that the Lilywhites have taken the best route to achieving their aims.

The Kildare county board and manager Cian O'Neill have already stated that the team won't be fulfilling the fixture against Mayo if it is held in Croke Park, after the GAA opted to fix the game for headquarters as part of a double header with Cavan vs Tyrone due to concerns over whether St Conleth's Park was big enough for the tie.

The GAA's decision sparked an angry reaction from Kildare, and an agreement has yet to be reached four days out from the game.

Speaking to Sean O'Rourke on RTÉ Radio 1, ex-Mayo boss Maughan said that while he feels Kildare are right in principle, it was unwise to threaten to withdraw from the qualifer clash straight out of the gate.

"Kildare have backed themselves into a corner, this should have been dealt with behind closed doors," Maughan said.

"There should have been some sort of an arrangement, but coming out publicly as Cian O'Neill did yesterday and Kildare management did saying it is St Conleth's Park or nowhere, I don't think that is helpful and what we have now is a very, very entrenched situation," he added.

"You will not hear a comment form Mayo because why would they get involved here but it is a position where nobody wants to be. It is very unfortunate."

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