Turley said Galway incident was 'badly handled'
Monaghan’s James Turley recollected what was a disappointing season for the county:
RS: Championship didn’t go well this year.
JT: Well our plans at the start, was Antrim in the Ulster Championship. Firstly we wanted to do as well in the league as we could, and that meant promotion. There was a stage in the middle of the league when we could have won it, but at the same time we could also have been relegated.
RS: And what was the attitude of the players at that point?
JT: The attitude was good. We had our sights set on getting promoted. Relegation wasn’t in our mind at all. Then the game down in Westmeath was one where we thought, ‘if we win this then we are on the brink of getting promoted’. But we lost that, and then went to Galway in a game that should have been at home, but got moved to Longford because of the racket in Clones against Kildare at half time.
RS: What did you think of that incident, and the punishment?
JT: Home advantage is a big thing as any county player will tell you, don’t ask me why. I think it could be the support, and having the crowd behind you, and knowing where you are in certain situations, having been there before on the field. We were winning at half time [against Galway], and we ended up losing. But I think the incident was handled badly. I think there was a €5,000 fine put on us and Kildare. I think that Kildare went ahead and paid it and we fought it and came out on the wrong side of it. It was a crucial thing. I think that if we had have taken Galway to Clones we would have won. But these things happen, and I have no control over those things.
RS: What was your reaction?
JT: Disappointment. Out of the seven games, we had three at home, but ended up having two home games. It was a disadvantage to us. I am certainly not going to blame Eamon McEneaney, he done as good a job as any manager that I have ever had. As players we have to take responsibility.
The full story is in the current issue of Gaelic Life, published on Thursday August 16. Buy your copy now in your local newsagent, or you can purchase the online version – for only 90p – by clicking here