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"It Was Petty" - John Giles Shocked At Treatment Of Tony O'Donoghue

"It Was Petty" - John Giles Shocked At Treatment Of Tony O'Donoghue
By Arthur James O'Dea
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There was a palpable sense of indifference surrounding Martin O'Neill's potentially early departure from Ireland.

Amid rumours that Stoke City were interested in acquiring the services of O'Neill (and perhaps his entire backroom staff), Irish fans did not appear too desperate for him to stay.

Should he have been in any way inclined to assess the mood of the nation toward his position, its hardly likely to have endeared the Irish fans to him - his post-Nations League draw discussion with Tony O'Donoghue would appear to reaffirm his frosty approach to all questions surrounding his suitability for the role.


Hitherto open about his concerns regarding O'Neill's behaviour in the role thus far, John Giles, speaking tonight on Off The Ball, was adamant that O'Neill is perhaps too sensitive for his own good:

One this is for sure, Martin doesn't like any criticism whatsoever, and, when you're in the job as Irish manager, of course you're going to be criticised ... there's a lot of criticism and a lot of praise.

Carrying on an arguement that Eamon Dunphy has previous stated regarding O'Neill's behaviour being insulting to the Irish fans (and not just O'Donoghue), Giles was equal in his condemnation:

Martin actually said, [his] being approached by a Premier League club was a compliment for the FAI ... so, he's turned that round on it's head.

He might not have broken any rules, but I think he broke a very, very important bond between him and the fans who, by the way actually help to pay Martin's wages.

Disappointed with the manner in which O'Neill continued his apparent dismay with O'Donoghue and his style of questioning, Giles appears in little doubt that O'Neill's attempts at deflection are hardly taking on the desired effect:

I was astonished to be quite honest to see Martin's response to Tony's first question. I thought it was petty to say the least.

Tony asked him a question. He said, 'You didn't ask me that beforehand', and 'You said good luck or bad luck or hard luck or whatever'. So what?

Tony's doing his job to ask him questions. To be quite honest, I think Martin was just avoiding Tony asking him any questions about why he went to Stoke. That's the real issue.

Seemingly still troubled by the manner in which his side were "hockeyed" by Denmark in the World Cup play-off, overturning the increasingly sceptical public opinion toward his suitability may be O'Neill biggest job of all at this stage.


See Also: Shane Duffy Stood Firm With Brighton Over Tribute To Martin McGuinness

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