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'If Kerry rattle Cork in the first 20 minutes, I think Cork will be in disarray'

Kerry legend Tomás Ó Sé has serious doubts over Cork’s capabilities.

Tomás Ó Sé has doubts over Cork ahead of the Munster final.
Tomás Ó Sé has doubts over Cork ahead of the Munster final.
Image: Lorraine O'Sullivan/INPHO

IT’S A TRADITIONAL pairing in next month’s Munster senior football final but Kerry legend Tomás Ó Sé has expressed serious doubts over Cork’s chances ahead of the game.

Cork booked their place with a comfortable win over Clare last Sunday but Ó Sé believes they still have several problems as they get set for the Fitzgerald Stadium on 5 July with a good start to the game being high on Cork’s agenda.

“Cork will have to shake it up big time. I don’t think they learned anything from the Clare game. If Kerry rattle Cork in the first 20 minutes, I think Cork will be in disarray.

“I think Cork have to come out and start strong. If they don’t these doubts and questions will creep in straight away. They don’t seem to perform when they are questions and this team needs a big performance when they are under pressure.

Confidence

“I think confidence is a big thing. One big win for Cork could bring them on a lot. But I think those losses – Pearse O’Neill, (Graham) Canty – robbed them not only of big physical men but robbed them of their leaders. I think they seem like a team rudderless enough to be fair from management down.

“Put it like this, if Eamonn Fitzmaurice was in charge of Cork, I think you’d have a different Cork team.”

Graham Canty Former Cork captain Graham Canty Source: James Crombie/INPHO

After emphatic losses in the last two Division 1 football league finals along with last summer’s Munster decider, Ó Sé feels there is an onus on Cork to respond.

“They’ve lost three heavy games. They seem like a poor relation of Mayo in that you can’t trust Mayo but you can’t trust Cork either. That’s not playing games, it’s just calling it as I see it.

“They just seem like a team if you get on top of them very, very early, they’ve no Plan B and they’ll just lie down.

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“You see the great teams there over the last few years, if Tyrone were losing against Dublin, and losing badly, they’d start a row or they’d start something to get back into it. We’d do the same. You show something like.

“But there was nothing there with Cork and that’s the worry I’d have for them. I just think on the field, they need fellas to stand up more and give more leadership.

Alan O'Connor argues with referee Marty Duffy Cork's Alan O'Connor Source: James Crombie/INPHO

“I think they still have a dangerous forward line, they’re after bringing back Alan O’Connor, they’re after chopping and changing, they’d (Eoin) Cadogan at midfield for the full league and then they’re suddenly gone.

“It’s kind of putting questions into players minds. What frame of mind would Fintan Goold be coming into the game or even preparing for the game?”

eircom Launch GAA Hub Tomás Ó Sé at yesterday's launch of the Eircom GAA Hub Source: Brendan Moran/SPORTSFILE

Ó Sé currently plays his club football with Cork outfit Nemo Rangers and does believe the talent exists in the side.

“Talent wise, I’m obviously playing down in Cork now, I do think they have talent. I do think around the middle of the field, they’re missing physicality, I think that’s the one area.

“At the back they’re tight enough, I think they’re strong attacking. I think their forwards given proper possession, you’ve (Brian) Hurley and (Colm) O’Neill inside.

“If they can’t get the ball in, they’ve a strong runner in (Paul) Kerrigan. There’s a lot of question marks there and there won’t be answers unless they beat one of the top three or four teams.”

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Fintan O'Toole

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