Wednesday 18 September 2019

'I would never have any sense of my absolute importance to the players on match day' - Brian Cody on Cats' glory bid

Manager insists winning matches is all about players

Kilkenny manager Brian Cody. Photo: Sportsfile
Kilkenny manager Brian Cody. Photo: Sportsfile
Michael Verney

Michael Verney

It's not a word that most would associate with a man entering his 16th All-Ireland final but Brian Cody jokes that he still feels "helpless" once his Kilkenny players cross the white line.

After his team's defeat in the 2016 decider, the 65-year-old insisted that there were plenty of good players in Kilkenny waiting to come through and they have proved their manager right this season, even if the James Stephens clubman won't take any credit for it.

"I always feel helpless," Cody jokes when asked if he feels powerless when games are in the melting pot. "You are there and you can pretend you have this huge influence on things, but it is all about what is happening on the field.

"You can't go in on the field. I would never have any sense of my absolute importance to the players on match day at all. It is the importance of the players and what they bring. You live and die by that."

"Honesty of effort" is something Cody regularly references and it was never more relevant than in their semi-final defeat of Limerick where they outworked the defending champions and dumped them out of the championship.

"You can see genuineness, honesty a mile away. It is so important to have that. You can't switch it on and off. It is either what you do or don't. It is brilliant to have players who do it. Players who haven't those qualities haven't a hope of surviving," he insisted.

"It is no use going out and saying, 'Sure I tapped over a few points myself'. What did you do for your team?"

GAA Newsletter

Expert GAA analysis straight to your inbox.

Irish Independent

The Throw-In: 'Jim Gavin has achieved what Mick O'Dwyer and Brian Cody couldn't do'

In association with Bord Gáis Energy

Also in Sport