Ex-Laois Boss Not Happy With Claims Made About His Team

Ex-Laois Boss Not Happy With Claims Made About His Team
By PJ Browne Updated

It was a year to forget for the Laois footballers. They exited the Championship on the first day of July after a 10-point hammering by Clare.

There had been wins against Longford in the first round of the Leinster Championship and another versus Wicklow in the opening round of the qualifiers, but there was also a 14-point defeat to Kildare in the Leinster quarter-final.

That all came after a spring which saw them relegated to the basement of the National League, having finished bottom of Division Three.

Manager Peter Creedon stepped down from his role on Thursday morning. He had been in charge for just a single season.

Nine days previously, at an explosive county board meeting, a group Laois players had been accused of drinking in the build-up to games.

'You can't drink pints of Guinness and talk shite in a pub, and then play football,' said Crettyard's John Burke.

Speaking on RTÉ's GAA Podcast on Thursday, Peter Creedon said that some of what was being said about the Laois footballers was 'off the wall'.

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Some of the things that were being said about us in Laois were just off the wall really. Some aspects of that county board meeting recently, you'd get the feeling it was premeditated in what was said about us.

The Corkman did admit that there were a few 'rogues' within the Laois panel but denied that there was a drinking culture.

In any panel of 32 or 33 players, you're going to get a few rogues here and there. Our attendance at training was perfect. All our data from GPS showed the effort in training never slackened.

There was one morning where three players failed to show but they were dealt with. One player didn't play for two championships matches after that as a consequence of his actions. We're accused of being two nice and quiet with some of the player but at the same time we were putting in place the actual structures needed going forward.

If you want to be a serious inter-county footballer, you need to be driven from within. You can't have a big long list of rules hanging off the door because ultimately that's the wrong focus.

Not once throughout the whole year did any person come to me or Gary [Kavanagh] or Tom [McKettrick], who were based and living in Laois, with information regarding players constantly drinking or whatever, meeting in nooks and crannies.

I wasn't following the players around all the time but to the best of our knowledge there wasn't a drink culture there and it was really bad form to have it splashed across the media because not only does it make the players and ourselves look like laughing stocks, it's not a positive reflection on Laois either.

Photo by Piaras Ó Mídheach/Sportsfile

See Also: How Kieran McGeeney's Small Gestures Inspired The Loyalty Of His Kildare Players

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