"I want this to be an enjoyable set-up", says new Tipperary hurling manager Liam Sheedy
The Tipperary players have to win back the public by their conduct on, and off, the field says the new Tipp Boss.
The biggest challenge facing the Tipperary senior hurling team will be winning back the confidence of the general public, according to returned Manager Liam Sheedy.
In a wide ranging and in-depth interview in this week's Tipperary Star, the Portroe man questions why Premier County supporters have been outnumbered at so many games over the last few seasons. And, he claims that the players must win back the confidence and support of their people, by their conduct on, and off, the field.
“There is definite optimism out there with people trying to figure out what 2019 could bring. I am trying to manage expectations because it's not as though you can just go in and flick a switch. It doesn't work like that
“If you ask me what would concern me - I do think we need to win back the public. I do think our crowds have dwindled. At most matches that I went to last year, Tipp were outnumbered time and time again, home and away. That's something that I will be looking at and from the first time we take to the pitch, I will be looking to get a team together that the county will follow because in 2010, by the time we got to the end of the term, that team was being followed. I think it is really important that the county and all the supporters come in behind them.
“We all know the work and effort that these guys put in and to be going out Sunday after Sunday and being outnumbered is something that we should not be proud of. I will be trying to create a team that's worth following.
“We'll get our honeymoon period as a new management team, but I would like to think that people will have a genuine appreciation of a high powered hurling team which performs well every time they go out. Create that culture on the pitch and they will be followed. Ultimately that is my challenge and it is one that I am happy to take on but I will be very vocal in terms of looking for the Tipperary people inside and outside the county, that genuinely have an interest in following the team, to come along and do so.”
The players from 2010 still in the panel.......
“I still have a relationship with all those players. They are probably looking at theselves thinking they have 2/3 more years left to get to the summit, so my promise to them and to every player involved, is that it will be done right. It will be a really good set-up and hopefully we will give them a chance to be the best version of themselves over 2019 and let's see where it takes us.”
The team for 2019.......
“ I’d like to think by the end of the league that we’d know twelve or thirteen of the starting championship players and where they’ll be playing. There was too much uncertainty for my liking at the end of the league this year where we didn’t really get to know what our best championship team was, and we probably end up the first day out, having to try lads that hadn’t seen the pitch before. So, I would see the league as a massive opportunity to really try and give guys a chance, and in their position.”
Pushing the players for 2019.....
“From the time I started in November 2007, every one of those players bought in and that created the culture and environment where people started to push themselves outside of their comfort zone and really started to perform at a higher level. We’ll be looking to create those conditions again, understanding obviously that the game has moved on significantly over the last ten years. It's a blank page for me. I certainly have no baggage going in and I will be giving everybody that I believe is good enough to wear that jersey over the course of 2019, the chance to put that jersey on.”
If you're going to accept poor standards in your preparation, then that's what you're going to get in your performance. I wouldn't be very forgiving when it comes to poor standards -it not something I want to be associated with me or my set-up. We'll be working off top standards because that ultimately is what I feel is going to deliver the top performances we're looking for. If you're not performing to the top of your game here at the moment in this competitive environment you're gone. The margins are so small.