A serious breakdown in trust between Roscommon LGFA and the current intermediate playing panel has been confirmed as the fallout from the apparently botched handling of the outgoing team management’s status rumbles on.
The Roscommon People understands that there have been a number of resignations at administrative level ‘behind the scenes’ – directly arising from huge disquiet over the saga.
The crisis arose last month due to the controversial manner in which time was called on the tenure of the county’s intermediate football ladies’ team management.
Last weekend, after unsuccessful behind the scenes efforts to bring some resolution to the matter, the current players went public and issued a statement to the media, in which they backed the outgoing management.
In the statement, the players insist that a decision made about the fate of the management was based on incorrect information. The players say that 17 members of the current panel were not consulted as part of any internal season review. Expressing their disappointment at how the matter has been handled, the players reject any suggestion that a majority of them were unhappy with management – and are calling on Roscommon LGFA to apologise to the outgoing management team.
A meeting of Roscommon LGFA executive was held on Monday, 4th of September. Then-manager Ollie Lennon and his management colleagues later claimed the meeting was told that up to 15 players on the current panel were not prepared to continue playing if the outgoing management remained in place. At the meeting, a decision was taken to part ways with Lennon and his management team. This move followed a recommendation to that effect from the Roscommon LGFA Development Committee.
In the aftermath of the meeting, Ollie Lennon and his management team – Tom Lennon, Brian Lennon and John Kennedy – responded by making it clear to the media that they rejected the suggestion that a comprehensive review had been conducted with players.
The outgoing management team said they were “extremely disappointed” at the decision of the Roscommon LGFA executive to “remove us”.
The outgoing management said at the time: “Following a recommendation from the Roscommon LGFA Development committee who undertook a review of our two years at the helm, it is our understanding that it was stated very clearly… that one of the reasons why we should not be offered a third year in charge was because up to 15 players had indicated that they wouldn’t return to the panel if we stayed on.
“Following our own internal review… we have every reason to believe that this was not the case and that the vast majority of players on the current panel were never consulted during the review, including our captain and vice-captain”.
Now the players have emphatically backed that stance, stating last weekend: “The vast majority of our 27 players including the captain and vice-captain were not contacted at all… we feel very let down and disappointed to be treated in such a manner. We have been misrepresented and treated incorrectly. It is simply not acceptable”.
The Roscommon People understands that a number of members of the LGFA Development Committee have resigned due to their misgivings about how this matter has been dealt with. There are reports too that a leading member of Roscommon LGFA executive has also resigned.
The Roscommon People invited Roscommon LGFA to issue a statement in response to the players’ statement. In response, the LGFA said “Roscommon LGFA will not be commenting on this matter at this time”.
Statement issued by Roscommon players
In their statement, the Roscommon players say: “As players we are extremely disappointed by the incorrect information that was given about our views on the current season/management team.
“Following an internal review, it is very clear that 17 players from the current panel were not contacted or surveyed to give any feedback on our season in any form. The vast majority of our 27 players including the captain and vice-captain were not contacted at all.
“We want to make it very clear that from the 27 players on our panel 17 were not contacted and 15 did not say that they would not return under Ollie (Lennon, outgoing manager) and his management team”.
The players added: “We feel very let down and disappointed to be treated in such a manner. We have been misrepresented and treated incorrectly. It is simply not acceptable”.
The players went on to say that they have asked Roscommon LGFA to contact Ollie Lennon and his management team to clarify that this information was incorrect, adding that “this has not been done”.
They concluded: “We feel we have done our part as players as the issue must be sorted internally. Our priority is that an apology is given to the management team regarding this misinformation. We once again ask for this to be given”.