Dublin manager Jim Gavin categorically denied there was any concerted media campaign from Dublin against Mayo’s Lee Keegan and seemed bewildered when the question put to him this morning at a media briefing in the Gibson hotel.
A number of ex-Dublin players earlier this week in interviews with various media outlets, gave their opinions on the normally explosive powder keg battles between Diarmuid Connolly and Lee Keegan. The general consensus was that referee Maurice Deegan will need to keep a close eye on that particular battle and the spotlight was put on Keegan and the tactics he uses to curb Connolly’s influence on the game.
This brought a sense of indignation from Mayo supporters and a raft of ex-Mayo players including David Brady who hit back with claims that it is an orchestrated campaign by Dublin GAA to single out Keegan for special attention from the officials in the replay.
But Gavin insists there has been no orchestrated campaign and there was no talk of it in the Dublin camp.
“It certainly hasn’t been spoken of in those terms in the Dublin camp, that’s for sure,” the Dublin manager told the press this morning.
“It’s a physical contact sport. We tell the players to get out there and play. Mayo play a physical contact game. What happened (between Keegan and Connolly) is predictable. Diarmuid is well able to look after himself.”
The outcry from Mayo people though is a little ironic considering they had no problem with their own ex-manager and an ex-player using the press and TV back in 2012 and 2013 to do exactly what they are complaining about now.
And they also had no problem with some of their own vilifying of Diarmuid Connolly and Philly McMahon after last years drawn semi-final, people in glass houses and all that comes to mind.