Tomás O'Sé left himself open to some unfortunate headlines last weekend when he attempted to evocatively describe what makes the Dublin footballers seemingly unstoppable. O'Sé was speaking to RTE at the launch of their Championship coverage,where he had this to say:
This Dublin team is mentally tough. They can win, they can lose, they can win dirty, they can win when they play poorly.
They have a mixture of great players. They have a mixture of - for the want of a better word - 'a scumbag', when they need somebody on the team to do the nasty things.
Despite it being meant as a compliment, O'Sé garnered some flak for his comments, and clarified them hours later:
O'Sé further clarified his comments in his Irish Independent column this morning, saying that the word choice was clumsy:
My use of the word 'scumbags' last Sunday was not intended to be in any way derogatory.
I've never held myself up as some kind of Wordsworth in front of a live microphone and maybe this episode tells you why. When I was a player, I ran from media interviews for the simple reason that I couldn't do that.
I just feared I'd always be susceptible to a loose phrase or expression that could end up on a wall in the opposition dressing-room. This week you can probably see why.
Brilliantly, O'Sé writes that he knew he had made a major error when he was backed by Sunday Game colleague Joe Brolly, saying that Brolly "has the language skills to beat away what fires that he lights".
An interesting theory by O'Sé, that if you have waded into the realm of public GAA controversy and found Joe Brolly standing steadfastly behind you, you may have gone too far.