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Roscommon Manager Says Age 'One Of My Biggest Strengths'

Roscommon Manager Says Age 'One Of My Biggest Strengths'
PJ Browne
By PJ Browne
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Davy Burke believes there is still plenty of improvement to come from the Roscommon footballers this season. Considering Burke's side are second in Division 1 with five games played, that will be encouraging for Roscommon supporters.

Roscommon started the league campaign, Burke's first in charge, with victories against Tyrone, Galway and Armagh before they suffered defeats to Monaghan and Mayo. Next up are the reigning All-Ireland champions Kerry in Tralee, but before that, the Rossies will enjoy some rest.

"We're taking next weekend off," Burke explained on RTÉ Radio One's Sunday Sport following their coverage of Mayo's victory over Roscommon.

"I think we really, really need it. It's been mentally tough for everybody. We've been trying to squeeze a lot in. We were appointed very late. I know for the first few weeks, 'Roscommon are flying' [was the talk] - that must have been just a bounce or something because it wasn't due to work. We had nothing done.

"I really think we're going to improve every week because every minute and every session we get to spend with these lads... You can see tactically we're a bit off the pace. Two weeks in a row now, two good keepers caught us out. We need to be ready for Easter Sunday, and that's going to take more and more time together."

davy burke roscommon

5 February 2023; Niall Daly and Ben O'Carroll of Roscommon celebrate after the game in the Allianz Football League Division 1 match between Galway and Roscommon at Pearse Stadium in Galway. Photo by Ray Ryan/Sportsfile

Burke, who previously managed the Wicklow footballers, is only 34.

Roscommon panel 'brilliant bunch of lads to work with'

"One of my biggest strengths is that I can think like the lads because I'm a similar age group to them," said Burke.


"If I'm driving down the M3 heading for Athlone, and I think it's become a little bit of a drain, or I feel tired, well they probably felt two or three days ago, or a week ago. I think, 'Boom, jump on that, give them the weekend off'.


"They were over the moon. Lads have partners in London... It's very important to keep the show going on and off the field. A happy bunch of lads is a productive bunch of lads.

"They're a brilliant bunch of lads to work with. The bounce and the energy off them is phenomenal. I can't believe their dedication.

"We'd have 20 lads in Dublin full-time, four or five in Galway. There's serious travel involved in the west of Ireland. That's where the toll is. The football we all love. The tactical stuff I love. It's the mileage that's the slog.


"I'm not too bad, I'm an hour [travelling to training]. Most of our lads would be an hour and a half. David Murray and Conor Hussey are coming from Salthill, and Salthill is a disaster to get in and out of."

As Division 1 stands, it would be Mayo and Roscommon who meet in this year's top tier league final on the weekend of April 1/2. With the two sides scheduled to meet in a Connacht quarter-final a week after the league decider, Burke said it's "probably not ideal".

"Somebody needs to look at that for next year," he said.


"Even for the team that comes out the wrong side on Easter Sunday, there's six, seven weeks [before the All-Ireland series]. What's the rush?"

See Also: Shane Walsh Was Ready To Return From Oz For Kilmacud Replay

davy burke roscommon



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