Friday 19 January 2018

Kilkenny legend Eddie O'Connor wants Brian Cody to move upstairs in major Cats shake-up

Brian Cody in the dressing room before the sixth annual Hurling for Cancer Research game, a celebrity hurling match in aid of the Irish Cancer Society in St Conleths Park, Newbridge. Photo: Sportsfile
Brian Cody in the dressing room before the sixth annual Hurling for Cancer Research game, a celebrity hurling match in aid of the Irish Cancer Society in St Conleths Park, Newbridge. Photo: Sportsfile

Jackie Cahill

Kilkenny's former All-Ireland-winning captain Eddie O'Connor says the Cats need a "major shake-up" to revive past glories - and has called for DJ Carey to be installed as senior team manager, with Brian Cody moving "upstairs" to become county board chairman.

O'Connor, who won Celtic Crosses in 1992 and 1993, the latter year as skipper, has also revealed that he snubbed the recent Jubilee team celebrations at Croke Park in protest at the GAA's broadcast deal with Sky.

In a wide-ranging observation of Kilkenny, O'Connor insists that the U-21s under-performed in this year's championship, despite reaching the All-Ireland final.

He says that manager Eddie Brennan "did his best" - but insists that "you can't be an expert in punditry and do inter-county management too."

But it's O'Connor's assertion that Cody should step aside and move into administration that's sure to set tongues wagging on Noreside.

The Glenmore man said: "A major shake-up is needed, with Brian Cody moving upstairs and DJ coming in as team manager.

"A lot of players do need a change but more so at county board level, where Brian would be a huge ambassador and who better to lead from the front as chairman?

"Far be it from me to tell Brian Cody what to do but I feel it's time for the great man to move upstairs, to take over as chairman of the Kilkenny County Board, where leadership is lacking."

Cody was recently appointed as Kilkenny senior team manager for a 20th season - but O'Connor added: "I'd love to see my former playing colleague DJ in a management capacity.

"That would be my dream team - the greatest manager of all time running the county board and the greatest player of all time managing the hurlers.

"From speaking to a number of players and supporters around the county, publicly they don't look for change but privately, the vast majority would like to see a change.

"It's the Kilkenny County Board that leave a lot to be desired. A number of people running the board and stuck in a time-warp and institutionalised."

Irish Independent

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