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Wednesday 19 June 2019

'They have grown men doing their laundry' - Ireland captain Seamus Coleman has big concerns for young players

Everton's Seamus Coleman
Everton's Seamus Coleman Newsdesk Newsdesk

This February will mark the 10th anniversary of Seamus Coleman's £60,000 move from Sligo Rovers to Everton and the Donegal defender is desperate to end the club's wait for silverware.

The Killybegs native, who turns 30 in October, has yet to lift a trophy with the Toffees and wants that to change this season.

“When people used to tell me time flies they’re right, it goes so fast. I’m proud. It’s not easy to play in the Premier League for nine or 10 years especially at a club like this, it’s a very big club in England," he told

"All I want now is to bring a cup to this club: an FA Cup, League Cup, win a trophy. That’s what this club wants, that’s what the fans want, that’s what we as players should all want. Something that’s really pushing me on is to do that.”

“I want to win a trophy for the people in the kitchen, for the media team, for everyone, not just the players,” he adds. “I’ve loved my time here, my two girls have been born in Liverpool, I’m well settled in the city.

"You don’t just stay at clubs like this, you have to work hard every day. Especially nowadays with the money in the game they can go out and buy anyone so you need to keep pushing and fighting and make sure you stay in the team.”

New Everton boss Marco Silva has spent a lot of money in the transfer window with three deadline day deals for Yerry Mina, Bernard and Andre Gomes taking their spending to almost £100million.

Coleman is relishing the new season but has concerns over the atmosphere younger players are entering when they join a big club now, compared to when he moved across the Irish Sea in 2009.

“It’s definitely changed,” he added.

“I came over as a 20-year-old, spoke when I was spoken to, cracked on, got my head down, tried to do the best I possibly could in training. If I didn’t train well or play well it would bother me until the next game I could possibly play well.

“Football was everything. Now I don’t know if young players, have got that same — it’s not level of respect as they are respectful — they’ve just been mollycoddled a bit through the academy, it’s all they’ve ever known: good food in the canteen, state-of-the-art gyms, their kit washed for them, their socks put in their kit, grown men having to do their laundry after games for them, they get all that done for them.

“I suppose clubs are trying to make the best players they can possibly make but I think in the process you need to make sure you’re making good people and personalities, because when the going gets tough in football you need good characters. I hope that side of the game, where if you get beat 2-0 you and your team-mates can have an argument and then you can leave it there, doesn’t stop. Nowadays you see less and less of that happening which is disappointing.

“That side of the game, it’s important to still have that. Touching on the young players, I’m not saying they’re in any way disrespectful or bad mannered, they just don’t have the same upbringing as maybe the lads did 10 or 15 years ago.

“Top players even here, [Leighton] Baines, Jags [Phil Jagielka] who’ve been here a long time, they probably grew up cleaning boots and cleaning stands and all the rest but that doesn’t happen nowadays.

"I just feel like you’ve got a hell of a lot of footballers, hell of a lot of academy footballers who probably all believe they’re going to make it, but the reality is they’re not, you hope you’re building good people that if they don’t make it they go on and do good things in their life and career. It’s just the way the game’s gone. It’s hard to stop it.”

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