National Forum

Where Have The Characters Gone

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Everyone has been talking about the state of football and hurling. Possesion game, ball going to far, poor officiating etc. My question is when was the last time we had a few characters playing or at least being interviewed. Where are the Johnny Pilkington's, John Mullane's and so forth. Whenever Warterford where playing you either loved John or you didn't. Waterford had a load of personalities. Mullane, Big Dan Eoin Kelly. Clare had Brian Lohan, Ger Loughnane no gray area in your feeling towards them. Tipp had Lar, Eoin Kelly, Pat Fox and Nicky English before them. Galway had Sylvie, Pete Finnerty Tony Keady Hopper McGrath. Cork were loaded with players we all had an opinion about over the years. Every team had a bit of personality. I think maybe the Face guards take away a bit from really knowing players as a player. Maybe the proffesionalism in the teams has taken from the players individuality. I miss having players on other teams you were dying to beat. It seems teams today are a bit robotic in the way they play and handle the media. Probably can't blame them when dealing with certian people in he media. I watch football but I don't follow football that closely I wonder is it the same?

gatha (Kilkenny) - Posts: 297 - 17/06/2021 11:27:05    2351588

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I was going to start a thread on this last week gatha!
The game, from when I was a kid and before, is gone.
Characters like Mullane have been replaced by robots, party-liners, media bans, etc.
Its just coached into the team like everything else "say nothing, tell them nothing", and so on.
We will never see an interview like John Mullane's raw emotion again. Even as a small child, it was great and I often look back at it.
Sad to see. Instead of lads having a social life, they now have a phone and a gambling app as their release.

StoreysTash (Wexford) - Posts: 1362 - 17/06/2021 11:32:08    2351593

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One of the last I think was John Mulhall from Killkenny and we seen what happened to him when he went outside of the norm.

oneoff (UK) - Posts: 703 - 17/06/2021 12:35:37    2351605

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I was saying the same over the last few years, it's all gone so serious now and the only teams playing off the cuff football now are Kerry and Galway every other team just follow the "process"

I'm not sure about the hurling as I wouldn't follow it that closely.

It's sad really, our players are ameture and every minute of their day's are planned out for them, I remember years ago meeting kerry players in pubs around Dingle during the summer and youd even meet some of them in dublin after big matches but that's all gone now.

Also on nice summer evening you could carry the young folk to watch kerry training and it was brilliant, the kids got to meet the players after and get Jerseys signed and there was a great connection between the supporters and the players.

KingdomBoy1 (Kerry) - Posts: 13479 - 17/06/2021 12:37:34    2351606

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All a bit misty eyed, some great characters in the game, on our side, Paddy Andrews, Mick McCauley, Jack, Philly, Murch are class craic. Then the enigmas that are the Marino Magician and The Living Legend that is Cluxton, characters in their own enigma and on their own terms. That said wed give the hacks very little. Its our way.

Can think of loads from different counties.

Laughing at the "off the cuff" comment - when it comes to playing the Dubs, everyone plays fear ball. I often wonder if teams went at us, would they get more joy. I agree on that extent, a lot of character and bravery has gone out of the game, id love a team brave enough to go toe to toe against us and not turn up with a blanket.

TheUsername (Dublin) - Posts: 4125 - 17/06/2021 13:08:24    2351613

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Replying To StoreysTash:  "I was going to start a thread on this last week gatha!
The game, from when I was a kid and before, is gone.
Characters like Mullane have been replaced by robots, party-liners, media bans, etc.
Its just coached into the team like everything else "say nothing, tell them nothing", and so on.
We will never see an interview like John Mullane's raw emotion again. Even as a small child, it was great and I often look back at it.
Sad to see. Instead of lads having a social life, they now have a phone and a gambling app as their release."
Shane Dowling gave a great post match interview a couple of years back. The consequences for lads saying the wrong thing are far greater now though than they were 20 years ago and so they tend to say very little. Spillane was talking about 2 Galway hurlers bringing a horse through a hotel on an All-Star tour in the 80s, if it was done now there would be camera phones out and demands for the players to be sent home in disgrace before their hangover had chance to wear off. Still plenty of characters in the game, just out of necessity they tend to stay hidden a bit more.

Soma (UK) - Posts: 2612 - 17/06/2021 13:39:19    2351623

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Replying To oneoff:  "One of the last I think was John Mulhall from Killkenny and we seen what happened to him when he went outside of the norm."
What happened?

Galway9801 (Galway) - Posts: 905 - 17/06/2021 13:43:50    2351626

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We had plenty of characters in Donegal over the years, too many probably! The players now are so well grounded and serious about what they do. You'd rarely hear about any Donegal players going off the rails on an impromptu session.
It was peak party-boy era when you had the likes of DV & Cass walking down main street Letterkenny wearing swimming caps and matching goggles as they made their way from one pub to the next. On a week day.

Lockjaw (Donegal) - Posts: 7392 - 17/06/2021 14:00:06    2351629

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Replying To TheUsername:  "All a bit misty eyed, some great characters in the game, on our side, Paddy Andrews, Mick McCauley, Jack, Philly, Murch are class craic. Then the enigmas that are the Marino Magician and The Living Legend that is Cluxton, characters in their own enigma and on their own terms. That said wed give the hacks very little. Its our way.

Can think of loads from different counties.

Laughing at the "off the cuff" comment - when it comes to playing the Dubs, everyone plays fear ball. I often wonder if teams went at us, would they get more joy. I agree on that extent, a lot of character and bravery has gone out of the game, id love a team brave enough to go toe to toe against us and not turn up with a blanket."
If you think Kerry and Mayo are blanket teams, I wonder do you actually watch any football at all, are you a band wagoner or is it just that you can't analyze a game properly !

AfricanGael (UK) - Posts: 1946 - 17/06/2021 14:06:24    2351630

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Sure we could say the same about soccer/snooker/tennis etc.

realdub (Dublin) - Posts: 8272 - 17/06/2021 14:17:50    2351637

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It's the modern way. I blame the internet etc. Go into any city, town or village in Ireland and the number of characters have dwindled something shocking in just the last 20 years.

Viking66 (Wexford) - Posts: 3104 - 17/06/2021 14:18:06    2351638

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I suppose characters are just not PC enough.

realdub (Dublin) - Posts: 8272 - 17/06/2021 14:33:16    2351647

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Replying To AfricanGael:  "If you think Kerry and Mayo are blanket teams, I wonder do you actually watch any football at all, are you a band wagoner or is it just that you can't analyze a game properly !"
It's the latter one there...

oneoff (UK) - Posts: 703 - 17/06/2021 14:44:18    2351651

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Replying To TheUsername:  "All a bit misty eyed, some great characters in the game, on our side, Paddy Andrews, Mick McCauley, Jack, Philly, Murch are class craic. Then the enigmas that are the Marino Magician and The Living Legend that is Cluxton, characters in their own enigma and on their own terms. That said wed give the hacks very little. Its our way.

Can think of loads from different counties.

Laughing at the "off the cuff" comment - when it comes to playing the Dubs, everyone plays fear ball. I often wonder if teams went at us, would they get more joy. I agree on that extent, a lot of character and bravery has gone out of the game, id love a team brave enough to go toe to toe against us and not turn up with a blanket."
The word character must mean something different in dublin.

The only dub who actually played a bit of off the cuff football ( connelly) walked away or was he pushed away we don't know ( because he didn't stick to the "process")

2 young enough dublin players walked away last year probably because it was too robotic and they weren't allowed express themselves.

KingdomBoy1 (Kerry) - Posts: 13479 - 17/06/2021 14:53:25    2351653

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Replying To TheUsername:  "All a bit misty eyed, some great characters in the game, on our side, Paddy Andrews, Mick McCauley, Jack, Philly, Murch are class craic. Then the enigmas that are the Marino Magician and The Living Legend that is Cluxton, characters in their own enigma and on their own terms. That said wed give the hacks very little. Its our way.

Can think of loads from different counties.

Laughing at the "off the cuff" comment - when it comes to playing the Dubs, everyone plays fear ball. I often wonder if teams went at us, would they get more joy. I agree on that extent, a lot of character and bravery has gone out of the game, id love a team brave enough to go toe to toe against us and not turn up with a blanket."
To go toe to toe with Dublin a team would have to play at least 7 or 8 forwards Username. Dublin are one of the most defensive teams to play against. While they are strong attacking they play with a man covering full back line nearly all the time and constantly have large numbers back. It's the division 3 or 4 teams that seem to play with more freedom.

CiarraiMick (Dublin) - Posts: 2701 - 17/06/2021 15:05:34    2351656

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Replying To KingdomBoy1:  "The word character must mean something different in dublin.

The only dub who actually played a bit of off the cuff football ( connelly) walked away or was he pushed away we don't know ( because he didn't stick to the "process")

2 young enough dublin players walked away last year probably because it was too robotic and they weren't allowed express themselves."
Incorrect my good man, Mannion gave an honest account of why he left during the week for all to see.

And it had nothing to do with them not been allowed express themselves.

realdub (Dublin) - Posts: 8272 - 17/06/2021 15:08:22    2351657

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Replying To realdub:  "I suppose characters are just not PC enough."
That's about it Realdub. Sadly the nanny state doesn't look kindly on lads who are a bit different or exciting!

Viking66 (Wexford) - Posts: 3104 - 17/06/2021 15:14:30    2351660

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I remember a few years ago listening to an interview with Jimmy Kerrigan former Cork football and Paul's Dad. He said he would not be playing today as there's no fun. He said in his time players might kill each other during a league match but would meet after for pints. He said watching his son Paul he says the players are programmed now and don't know players from other counties unless the on foreign trips. Years ago players knew each other well.Also its so serious now the fun has gone out of it. There s still a few characters left like Sean Quigley Fermanagh. Rory Beegan and Niall Morgan.

CiarraiMick (Dublin) - Posts: 2701 - 17/06/2021 15:15:37    2351661

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While we can all look through Rose tinted glasses I do firmly believe there were far better and more entertaining characters years ago. Kerry s Paidi Ó Sé was a character of the highest order and a rogue. Anthony Finnerty Mayo Shane the cake Curran (Rossies) Mullane (Waterford) Colin Corkery (Cork) Joe Hayes(Tipp) Tony Keady r. I. p. and Brendan Lynskey (Galway) Jimmy Keaveney(Dublin) Martin Furlong Sean Lowry (Offaly)

CiarraiMick (Dublin) - Posts: 2701 - 17/06/2021 15:26:26    2351665

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Replying To realdub:  "Incorrect my good man, Mannion gave an honest account of why he left during the week for all to see.

And it had nothing to do with them not been allowed express themselves."
True Mannion walked away because he found the commitment was too heavy. He was still enjoying the game but wanted to concentrate on other things. Mc Caffrey walked cos he said he fell out of love with the game and was physically drained. He said after 19 final when shaking hands with David Moran oh no we have to do this again. He said he found it hard even to go train g for the replay.

CiarraiMick (Dublin) - Posts: 2701 - 17/06/2021 16:00:42    2351674

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