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Dublin: 7 °C Monday 25 March, 2019

'Joe Brolly is speaking absolute nonsense' - Peter Canavan

He also dismissed claims that cynical fouling was being “systematically coached” as untrue.

Canavan is unhappy with Brolly for his criticism of Tyrone.
Canavan is unhappy with Brolly for his criticism of Tyrone.

FORMER TYRONE FOOTBALLER Peter Canavan has reacted angrily to RTÉ pundit Joe Brolly’s recent remarks about one of the county’s current stars, Sean Cavanagh.

Brolly has previously been firm in his criticism of Cavanagh, after the player committed a cynical foul during his side’s win over Monaghan at the weekend.

Yet speaking on Today FM’s The Last Word, Canavan described Brolly’s claims as “absolute nonsense” and said that it was unfair of the pundit to “publicly humiliate one of Tyrone’s greatest servants”.

“He’s represented his club, his county and indeed Ireland with great distinction. He goes out to play football,” Canavan said.

“If you speak to any of these players who are playing the game, they would have done exactly the same thing,” he explained, adding that cynical fouling “has to be looked at and we have to do more [to stop it]”.

He continued: “The way Cavanagh was condemned was totally wrong. He has to go home to his wife and to work the next morning.”

The current Fermanagh manager added that analysts should focus more on the tactical side of the game, rather than looking at controversial incidents.

“Take a leaf out of what’s going on with the hurling – they’re talking about the game, the strategies,” he said.

“Joe Brolly made the point that this type of football is systematically coached – it’s definitely far from the truth. It’s a slight to the teachers and the coaches. If anyone doubts us, go to the schools where the coaching is taking place.”

Canavan added that he had sometimes behaved badly during games, and was not proud at having done so.

“At times, I’ve stepped over the line, but you regret doing those things,” he said. “Why did I do it? Because I wanted to win the game.”

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Paul Fennessy

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