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'I'm Not Particularly Optimistic' - Matty Forde Talks Modern Leinster Football

'I'm Not Particularly Optimistic' - Matty Forde Talks Modern Leinster Football
By Conor Neville Updated

"I think I heard some of the Westmeath players saying recently that 'by default' they're the second best team in Leinster"

Matty Forde - the very definition of that modern GAA cliche, 'the marquee forward' - appeared on the third edition of the current season of the Hard Shoulder, Balls.ie's weekly GAA podcast.

Forde, who shone in Wexford's stunning run to the All-Ireland semi-final in 2008, an improbable journey which has some echoes in Tipp's run this year, is, like everyone, gloomy about the state of football in Leinster.

Forde has been involved in the Wexford coaching setup in recent years and has seen the despondency first hand.

In our county, I'm not particularly (optimistic) but across the board it doesn't look like it. It's kind of a competition for second place in Leinster. I think I heard some of the Westmeath players saying recently that by default they're the second best team in Leinster. They got to the last two Leinster finals but lost them heavily.

Is there any benefit in getting to a Leinster final and losing it heavily? I don't think so... To be honest, it looks like the gap is getting bigger and not smaller in most cases. And it's very hard to see where it's going to be closed in the next four or five years.

On the show, Matty - who confirmed to us beforehand that his first name is not spelled 'Mattie' - also talked about:

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  • How the updated GAA championship structures gives the stronger counties even more of a chance of reaching the latter stages
  • Why he's happy he's not playing senior football anymore and doesn't particularly enjoy watching it
  • How the assumption that he 'carried' Wexford was very unfair on his teammates

Listen below:

Subscribe to the podcast on iTunes and Stitcher.

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Matty was speaking on the third episode of this year's Hard Shoulder podcast, a weekly GAA podcast hosted by Meath legends Anthony Moyles and Niall Kelly. The podcast will run for the rest of the season and will feature many more special guests, and scientists [citation needed] believe it will improve your life by somewhere in the region of 84%.

In addition to the big interview, we quiz our guests and discuss some of the big stories to arise from the past week. 

On the first episode last week Bernard Brogan was interviewed about Dublin's dominance, his abilities vis a vis his brother Alan, and how he'd approach the game had he born in a different county. Listen here.

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On the second episode, Johnny Doyle killed a few of the myths that had grown around Kieran McGeeney and spoke about the changing nature of the media coverage of the GAA since his early playing days. Listen here.

You can subscribe to the podcast on iTunes and Stitcher.

Read more: Balls Remembers Mayo's Thrilling But Doomed All-Ireland Bid In 1996

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