Relegation, financial advice and two Martys…



Oh well, now for the championship!

The Hyde looked great on Sunday. Unfortunately, so did Kerry. I was a little late; on the positive side, that meant I got parking directly outside the gates. Does this happen every time (if you turn up a little late)?

  Roscommon were buzzing. In truth, they never gave up, they left everything on the pitch, but Kerry absolutely oozed quality.

  It was a beautiful day, but very, very windy, as I’m sure Roscommon goalkeeper Colm Lavin will agree. Kick-outs were some challenge on Sunday, the ball actually spinning back like a frisbee more than once. 

  Our fate sealed long before the end, the atmosphere in the stand became subdued. So Roscommon kind of stuttered out of Division One, lamenting that unproductive trip to Cavan, what might have been against Tyrone. 

  Still, roll on the championship…and there is much to look forward to!


Free financial advice to FAI

I’m not great with the ould finances, but I still think I could possibly – just possibly – help the FAI out.

  We are constantly hearing that the Football Association of Ireland is ‘cash-strapped’.

  Now it turns out that they have been paying their (now former) CEO John Delaney an annual salary of €360k.

  This, we knew. What we didn’t know was that the FAI has also been paying rent of €3k a month on a house so that Mr. Delaney could rest his head at night and dream of his bulging bank account. 

  So, here’s my advice. When the FAI hires a new CEO (Mr. Delaney has moved to a new role within the organisation) why not just pay that person €360k a year and tentatively suggest that they pay their own rent/mortgage?

  That way, the FAI would save €36k a year. Another point, and I appreciate the horse has bolted on this one…if the FAI had declined to pay Mr. Delaney’s rent over the last three years, they would have saved €108k and therefore would not have had to look for a €100k ‘bridging loan’…which they got from Mr. Delaney.

  My financial advice to the FAI is free, although I am available to discuss them paying our mortgage…


Dubs and the cattle: More revelations!


I received this email from Roscommon fan Eddie Morley, in relation to my recent articles on the ‘night of mayhem’ when a small number of Dublin fans rampaged in Roscommon town (probably in 1975)…


Dear Paul,


I’ve enjoyed your recent articles which have revived great memories from the 1970s. I was 13 on that day, when the Dubs came to town. In those days I was brought from Loughglynn to every match with my older brother by Tom Mahon, a diehard Rossie supporter from the village (Feigh), who sadly passed away a few years back.

  My abiding memory is of the field on the right-hand side before the Hyde on the Athlone Road…I think it still is a low, waterlogged field. Cows were peacefully grazing in that field up ‘till early afternoon on that Sunday.

  I vividly remember a group of Dubs with long banners wrapped around them chasing a bewildered cow who had a ‘Jackeen’ (Dublin supporter) on her back…we thought it was hilarious at the time. Pity the poor cow however…the more supporters cheered from the road, the faster the poor cow went. I can’t recall everything of what happened next, but the Dub went flying at some stage and we continued on our way to the Hyde.

  I can’t recall memories of the match but I think Tony Hanahoe and David Hickey were on the Dublin team. I would love to see if anyone still has the line-outs.

  As for the night before (when fights broke out in Castle Street and Dublin fans rode some cattle in a nearby field/in the street) I wasn’t old enough to be on Castle Street the night before – maybe just as well!


Yours sincerely,

Eddie Morley


* Thanks Eddie for more great memories of that weekend…and I will welcome any more contributions, to


There’s more than one Marty…


I hardly ever watch Winning Streak, partly because Marty, giant of broadcasting though he is, has developed a very irritating folksy-gone-mad style.

  It’s all terribly excitable and frantic, and dare I say it, prone to being a touch patronising towards the ‘Up-from-the-country-for-a-bit-of-dosh’ brigade.

  There are times when I feel sympathy for the contestants as the incredibly enthusiastic Marty Maestro emerges before them, rubbing his hands together, his head bobbing with excitement, a flurry of words startling the poor player. Some of these Saturdays I’m expecting a contestant to pull earplugs out of nowhere and communicate with Marty through hand signals only.

  (Now don’t get me wrong, I’m still a fan of Marty’s, he’s one of our most versatile presenters, and a lovely man. I spent a few hours in his company when he presented the Roscommon People of the Year Awards many years ago, and he could not have been nicer).

  Anyways, it just ‘came on’ on Saturday night, and before I could take drastic action, there was a fine, friendly Roscommon man in front of us. And I had no idea of the current (they keep changing the ‘games’) format, but within a minute of kick-off the Roscommon man had won a new car!

  So well done to Roscommon Hospital employee Brendan Leech, winner of that new car (and €5K). And while we’d really like Marty to tone it all down a little, we’ll stay loyal to the silver-tongued national treasure.


Is this really happening?


Speaking of well-known ‘RTE Martys’…I see on the cover of the Sunday Independent’s Life magazine that Marty Morrissey is posing in the spot normally occupied by Miriam O’Callaghan.

  There’s Marty and comedian Bernard O’Shea, both in dress suits, complete with bow ties, staring dreamily from the front cover, under the headline ‘A fine bromance: When Marty met Bernard’.

  I was going to say ‘there are no words’ but unfortunately there are thousands of them inside, in a four-page special.

  It seems that the bizarre and relentless process of transforming the GAA commentator, decent man Marty, into some sort of all-round celebrity, is being cranked up.

  From what I can gather from this er…cover story, the latest development is: GAA commentator and journeyman comedian make a two-part television series about male grooming. Yep, coming soon. That’s it.

  Miriam must be fuming.