Friday 23 February 2018

There's a thin line between disciplinarian and power trip

Holland and Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal
Holland and Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal

Colm Parkinson

We spoke on Off the Ball on Monday night about Louis van Gaal the disciplinarian.

According to reports, there were two rules he enforced at team meals – players had to sit in the same place for every meal and they had to sit up straight.

I would expect pedantic protocols like this in primary school or in the army but not in a team sport environment. It's no surprise he's a divisive character.

Silly rules are filtering into GAA panels too. We heard the story of the Donegal players handing up their mobile phones on the team bus to Croke Park so team news couldn't filter out.

Most panels now sign up to a charter at the beginning of the year and must adhere to it or face the consequences.

We know Kevin Cassidy was thrown off the Donegal panel for contributing to an end-of-season book.

Earlier this season, a member of an inter-county football panel was given a four-week suspension for doing a newspaper interview in which he harmlessly commented on his former county manager.

There's a thin line between being a disciplinarian and being on a power trip. Discipline is vital for a successful team, but common sense must play a part too.

Irish Independent

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