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Jackie Tyrrell Confident Kilkenny Won't Suffer Same Fate As Manchester United

Jackie Tyrrell Confident Kilkenny Won't Suffer Same Fate As Manchester United
Gary Connaughton
By Gary Connaughton
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History suggests that after losing a long-standing manager, teams can often struggle to adapt to a new era. There have been countless examples of that down through the years in various codes.

Kilkenny currently find themselves in a similar situation.

Brian Cody had managed the side for 24 seasons, winning 11 All-Irelands and 18 Leinster titles along the way. While they had not quite experienced as much in the Liam MacCarthy in recent years, there was a sense of shock when he stepped aside last season.

It was certainly clear that whoever replaced him had very big shoes to fill.


Derek Lyng was the man that was chosen to follow him, having had success as Kilkenny U20 boss and as a selector in the senior setup. While The Cats are going through somewhat of a transition, people within the county will still be expecting big things once championship rolls around.

Jackie Tyrrell happy with Kilkenny succession plan

Manchester United are a famous example of a side who struggled after losing a talismanic manager, suffering a remarkable drop in standards after the departure of Alex Ferguson in 2013. His replacement, David Moyes, lasted less than a season in the job.

However, Jackie Tyrrell feels that any comparisons between United and Kilkenny are unfair.


Speaking on the RTÉ GAA podcast, the James Stephens man said that he felt his county had gotten their succession plan right, even if there have been some early struggles this season.

I'd like to think that Kilkenny and Manchester United are worlds apart in so many ways.

The strength of Kilkenny was Brian Cody and the Kilkenny County Board, the structures that have stood the test of time.

Derek would really be a players’ man, a very approachable guy. He would be able to get in amongst them, talk to them, get his arm around the shoulder of some lads, give lads a kick in the backside if they need it.

I’d say he won’t rock the boat too much, it would be a continuity of a lot of the things that Brian has done and he’ll slowly start putting his own slant on his style of management and this group...

He probably has a lot of things to manage. Richie Hogan, TJ Reid - a lot of miles on the clock, the integration of the U20s, but essentially it’s a new era for Kilkenny.

[Conversely] to what people would think with Brian and his lack of movable tactics, throughout last year he did start to use the ball an awful lot shorter, he did start to retain possession an awful lot more.

So, it will be interesting to see does Derek continue with that, does he accelerate it a bit more.

I did go to a couple of the Walsh Cup games. They were really, really poor, it was hard to see kind of what style of play Derek was trying to implement.

It’s going to be a wait and see but you couldn’t have a better guy positioned to take it on from Brian.

Regardless of the change in management, you'd imagine that Kilkenny will still be in the mix when it comes to the business end of the championship later this summer.

It would certainly be a big surprise to see Derek Lyng end up as the GAA's answer to David Moyes.


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