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'I think Brian will go into this weekend and there won't be one mention of Fitzy'

Clare All-Ireland winner Colin Ryan joined the lads in the latest episode of The42 GAA Weekly.

Clare boss Brian Lohan and Wexford manager Davy Fitzgerald.
Clare boss Brian Lohan and Wexford manager Davy Fitzgerald.
Image: Bryan Keane/INPHO

THERE WAS NO doubt the big talking point from this morning’s All-Ireland hurling qualifier draw.

Clare taking on Wexford next Saturday in Thurles is a huge knockout championship game, all the more so given Clare’s win last November, the presence of two former All-Ireland winning team-mates in the managerial roles, and the Covid controversy sparked by this year’s league meeting.

Clare All-Ireland winner Colin Ryan joined host Maurice Brosnan and The42 GAA Editor Fintan O’Toole to discuss the draw. 

He doesn’t feel the well-documented breakdown in the relationship between managers Brian Lohan and Davy Fitzgerald will be a hot topic in the dressing-rooms this week.

“I think Brian has managed it quite well. He’s a very straight figure. I think Brian will go into this weekend and there won’t be one mention of Fitzy throughout the whole week in preparation for it.

“Even when Brian speaks in his interviews, it’s very rarely brought up about it. He’s very matter of fact, even the way he spoke about James Owens last week. He’s doesn’t really mince his words or talk in riddles. He doesn’t look for extra motivation, I think Brian just wants his team to show passion and to work hard and to go from there.

“I think it’s probably a tough draw for Clare players because Wexford are going to be smarting from last year, and then you had the Covid thing this year and the sideshows. Wexford will be up for it. If Wexford feel they’re going to get something out of the year, they’re going to have to win. If Clare take them down two years in a row, where does that leave them?

“You’d like to think that Clare won’t be thinking about it this week but I suppose the media side of things is going to take off from hereon for the rest of the week.”

Ryan also talked to the lads about Clare’s attacking approach this year, how will Wexford try to stop Tony Kelly and what the 2020 loss will mean in motivational terms for Wexford.

We also looked ahead to Waterford against Laois, discussed hurling relegation’s issue as Antrim go down and wonder what Cork hurling can get out of landing a long-awaited All-Ireland underage title.

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