Aidan O'Shea reflects on criticism and return to form

Mayo footballer chats to Off The Ball's Joe Molloy

Mayo, Aidan O'Shea,

Mayo's Aidan O'Shea with Eoghan Collins of Clare ©INPHO/Tommy Grealy

In recent times, Aidan O'Shea has been arguably the most scrutinised inter-county footballer with criticism coming from certain quarters and for various reasons like taking selfies with supporters.  

The Mayo powerhouse touched on that when he spoke to Off The Ball, stating: "It's impossible to try and switch off totally. To be honest with you, a lot of the boys were pulling the piss out of it and making a joke out of it or whatever. It is what it is. I did my best to switch off from it and to be honest with you, would have stayed away from social media for a prolonged period of time. I got to the stage where I didn't even know what other games were on television from a sport point of view whereas usually I'd be well clued into things. I just zoned out and to be honest with you, with my injury, it would take a huge amount of time to try and get back and that was just totally my focus and you can't control things like that."  

On interacting with fans, especially young fans, he feels it's important to "make sure that I'm obedient especially to kids. I think it's an important part of what the GAA's about and what we're all about as a community".

O'Shea has been hitting form during Mayo's qualifiers quest after an injury affected build up into the Championship campaign.

"It's obviously been a frustrating few months for me, especially missing the league and then I was back in action after the league and obviously I came on in the last few league games, had a bit of continuity from thereon into a couple of weeks before the Sligo game but unfortunately had a bit of a groin issue that kind of flared up," he said.

"It was a bit disappointing but I've been back training fully since just slightly the week before the Galway game and ever since. The last few games have been enjoyable and it's just nice to be back on the pitch."

You can listen to the full interview on the podcast player orstream/download from iTunes' GAA on Off The Ball Series: