Colm Begley on Laois - 'We were probably a bit immature'

The Laois player has welcome the appointment of new boss Tomás Ó Flatharta.

The Laois footballers.
The Laois footballers.
Image: INPHO/Ryan Byrne

COLM BEGLEY RECKONS an immaturity has been one of the root causes of the underachievement of the Laois footballers as he welcomes the appointment of new boss Tomás Ó Flatharta.

Begley has praised the work of Armagh All-Ireland winner Justin McNulty with the Laois squad over the last three years but believes they need to lift themselves ‘to the next level’.

“Justin McNulty brought us on a fair bit as well and we just need to lift it to that extra level. I do, very much think we’ve underachieved.

“For a while there we were probably a bit immature in some senses and didn’t realise the work that had to be done. But over the last three years with Justin we have put in massive work and the players have bought into it.”

Begley hopes the new management team can help Laois progress. Former Westmeath and Galway boss Ó Flatharta has been joined by Kerry native Jerome Stack as coach while ex-Laois players Fergal Byron and Noel Garvan will also be part of the backroom team.

“I haven’t met him (Tomás) yet but I’ve heard good things”, says Begley. “He was involved with Páidí Ó Sé and did great things there as well.

“Hopefully he is the man that can bring something fresh to it. We have players that are well able to contest in Leinster.

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New Laois boss Tomás Ó Flatharta (left)
Pic: INPHO/Mike Shaughnessy

“Dublin, at the moment, are the pinnacle and that is what every team is reaching for. There are good players there (in Laois), we just have to find a way of gelling together and get consistently playing football.

“I think, at times with Laois, it can be a case of 10 of our 15 will play, or 6 of our 15 and the next day the opposite will happen. There is definitely ability and there is drive. Hopefully next year we can really push further because it is not an old team.”

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