THERE have been no articles pinned to the changing room walls, there have been no roars from Eamonn Burns to ‘prove those pundits wrong’ – for Down goalkeeper Michael Cunningham, the side’s recent progress has simply been the result of a level-headed approach.
Yes, one or two players, in public and private, have made it known that they felt some of the analysis was over the line as the side struggled early in the season, but the Castlewellan net-minder feels that the mature approach works best as they prepare for Saturday’s Ulster semi-final against Monaghan at the Athletic Grounds.
They go into that game on the back of two excellent results, a draw in Cork securing their Division Two status and, more importantly, an Ulster Championship win over Armagh bringing them to the last four.
He said: “We showed that togetherness against Armagh, and that was one of the most impressive things for me. We had belief in each other. We were a point down at half-time but at no stage did anyone hit the panic button.
“Everyone in the group is level-headed, after you win you have friends and after you get beat you lose them and we all know that.
“It wouldn’t be a motivation for us to silence our critics, because you’re always going to have those critics. Monaghan in an Ulster semi-final is all the motivation we need.”
The full interview with Michael Cunningham is available in store today or online here.