Michael Duignan has called Offaly GAA's decision to remove Kevin Martin as manager of the county's hurlers "another short-term, reactionary move".
At a county board meeting on Monday night, Martin was relieved of his duties with Joachim Kelly appointed on an interim basis.
Offaly have lost both their games in this year's Joe McDonagh Cup and are now at risk of falling into hurling's third tier, the Christy Ring Cup.
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"We have to have an acceptance here in Offaly that Westmeath, Laois and Carlow - counties like this - have better players than us now," two-time All-Ireland winner Duignan told RTÉ Radio One's Morning Ireland.
They've moved ahead of us. They've been beating us at senior and minor for quite a number of years now.
And why is that? I think the county board, our clubs, our coaching staff and our players have to take responsibility. Along with Kevin. He's been manager and of course, some of it rests at his feet.
Three years ago, Westmeath beat us by 14 points in the championship. What has been done differently between then and now? Very little. Put in a different manager and expect different results.
I know these people. In many cases, they're decent, well-meaning people. But we're not grasping it. Until we devise a plan that suits our demographics and we implement it, we're not going to improve. The people in power need to listen to the people who are willing to do that.
I feel personally very sorry for Kevin Martin. One of the greatest Offaly players. A great teammate, a great friend. When he played for Offaly, he prepared diligently, he took responsibility for his performances and he didn't look for scapegoats. And he has been treated badly in this instance.
Duignan called for the county's players to rally behind Joachim Kelly for the remainder of the Joe McDonagh campaign.
"When this year is over, the county board need to take a big strong look at themselves and what's going on," he added.
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