Tuesday 16 January 2018

Have your say

'Ball' boys missed by their listeners

Thanks for your piece about the loss of the Off the Ball guys from Newstalk [Mar 10].

It's sad – I loved the show, the guests, the skewed analysis, the references to non-sporting news and the interaction between Eoin, Murph and Ken.

I'd love to hear the guys back on air soon. In a weird kind of a way, OTB served as somewhere that young Irish males (like me) could have their voices heard – usually about football, but heard nonetheless.

I think that's why lads like me feel so aggrieved. There is a sense of genuine loss about it.

Anyway – thanks for your words.

Sean Gilsenan

Just a quick line to say great article in today's Sunday Independent on Off the Ball.

I was one of those devoted young men you speak off that religiously tuned into the lads every night.

The sense of anticipation as to what lay ahead as the voice of Eoin McDevitt came through the radio to the backdrop of Seven Nation Army by the White Stripes just before the news at seven was utterly exhilarating. Hopefully, they'll be back soon in a similar guise.

Patrick Keville

I would like to say that was an excellent article about the Off the Ball show. I currently live in Australia and I listen to them on playback the following day. They will be missed.

Keep up the good work.

James Gaughran

I often switched off the sound on midweek football match and listened to 'the lads' instead of the asinine cliché-riddled nonsense from the mouth-breathers who count for commentators in football today.

Well said sir.

Cormac O'Brien

I'm doing something which I've never done before. Writing to a journalist who has written an article I've just read.

Cutting to the chase, I simply felt Dion Fanning was inside my mind and plucked the narrative of the piece and cast it as his own. Thank you for writing it.

The theme of pragmatism winning out over talent and vision in this country oft goes unmentioned.

Why are we so afraid of something which challenges our norms?

Gavin Lumsden

Tipp dishonour for miracle man Walsh

I was at the Tipperary v Kilkenny match last Sunday and witnessed the sending-off of Tommy Walsh for two yellows. Whether he deserved them or not what followed afterwards on his walk to the dugout in the so-called home of hurling was a torrent of abuse dished out to him by some Tipp supporters which will live with me for a long time to come.

What is it about this man that so vexes the Tipp fans and other fans that they should lose the run of themselves in this disgusting way? Real hurling supporters would be glad to be in the presence of such an undoubted talent. In the week that's in it when a new Pope has been elected, it reminds me of John Paul II who now is on a fast track to sainthood whereby a couple of miracles will have to be dug up along the way to prove he was a saint among us and we didn't realise it. May I suggest Tommy for sainthood as he definitely ticks all the right boxes with miracles galore.

Without boring people with all that he has won, the miracle is that this man continues to play hurling like we have never seen before and what an honour it is for us here in Kilkenny to be able to support him and the rest of the panel. Finally Tommy, as Ronan Keating tweeted last week to another genius, FTB.

Noel Morrissey

League not at fault if fans do not show

For a paper that dislikes group-think, it does a pretty good line in it itself. Talking about the Airtricity League, John O'Brien mentions a "lovely ground in Galway laying fallow" [Mar 10]. Has John every heard of the concept of promotion/relegation? After all, Coventry City have a lovely ground but that doesn't stop them laying fallow in Division 1 in England. There is also the added complication there that the supporters actually follow their own team.

You can talk about strategic plans until the cows come home but it comes down to this: if 21,000 people turn up at Thomond Park for a nothing Pro-12 game against Zebre, and only 3,000 turn up at a Munster derby between Limerick and Cork, that's an indictment of the Irish people, not the Airtricity League.

Making comparisons with the operating profits of La Liga clubs is pointless. Ireland's role models are in Norway, Denmark, Austria, Switzerland and Cyprus.

Mike Brennan

PS: Failure to print will be self-explanatory

Irish Independent

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