Following some seven weeks of hostilities in Galway, a second player revolt has come to a conclusion.
Recognising the overwhelming tone of no confidence in the dressing room, Anthony Cunningham elected to stand down as the Galway manager on Monday ahead of a county board meeting where he was expected to be re-appointed, despite the decline of support among the players.
The St Thomas' club man subsequently issued a caustic statement which identified a particular group of players as the perpetrators of a 'kangaroo court decision' and accused them of doing so in their attempt to 'unjustly extend their lifespan as inter-county players.'
At the beginning of October, the co-managerial partnership of Pat Holmes and Noel Connelly, also announced their resignation in Mayo after the majority of the team expressed an absence of confidence in management.
Commentary surrounding these events has been rampant, and in relation to the Galway situation, the players have attracted many critics.
But former Laois footballer, and Off The Ball presenter Colm Parkinson, has spoken out in support of the Galway hurlers as well as the footballers in Mayo. Writing in the Irish Independent today, Parkinson lauds the two panels for their bravery while also calling out former Clare hurling manager Ger Loughnanne for his cutting assessment of the impasse in Galway.
— Anne-Marie Flynn (@thecailinrua) November 21, 2015
'There is a large section of GAA supporters and commentators that believe the Galway hurlers and Mayo footballers are disrespectful upstarts. Ger Loughnane went so far as to say the Galway lads "didn't deliver when the pressure came on. Blaming the manager is a pathetic cop-out".This is a red herring of the highest order. I'd love Ger to tell us exactly how the players blamed Anthony Cunningham for their All-Ireland loss.'
Parkinson went on to write that while he sympathises with the managers who were the victims of these player revolts, he praised the players for standing together in solidarity and for their passion to strive for better.
— jp kerrigan (@jpkerrigan) November 20, 2015
'Players don't have time to waste on managers they believe can't help them improve. I actually have a lot of sympathy for the three managers ousted and I'm sure they believe they were doing a good job. But instead of calling it a 'pathetic cop-out' I think the Mayo and Galway panels' decisions were incredibly brave. The easy option is to go with the flow, despite being unhappy, and keep your head down. Mayo and Galway players knew they would receive a massive backlash but stuck together and to their convictions despite the intense pressure.