Monday 24 October 2016

'You're kicking me when I'm down,' says Clare hurling boss Davy Fitzgerald over €40k pub debt

Davy Fitzgerald
Davy Fitzgerald

All-Ireland winning hurling boss Davy Fitzgerald has been pursued over debts of more than €40,000, the Herald can reveal.

The high-profile Clare coach was furious when asked about the debts that relate to his pub near Newmarket-On-Fergus.

"When a man is down, it's just kick him even more. This week, that's what it seems to be," he said, referring to his team's loss in the hurling championship last weekend.

Two judgements were registered against Mr Fitzgerald (43) for debts relating to the Bellsfort Inn pub.

In February 2014, a €35,912 judgement was registered by Clare County Council against Mr Fitzgerald.

It is understood that this is to do with non-payment of local authority rates.

Separately, he owes €4,490 to the Irish Music Rights Organisation (IMRO) in a judgement dating back to September 2011, also in relation to the pub.

Mr Fitzgerald said he was "very disappointed" to be asked about the matter, particularly after his team lost to Limerick by one point last Sunday.

"The week we're after being beaten in the championship and I'm getting hell for leather as it is and now you've decided to do this," he said.

Mr Fitzgerald insisted that he has come to an arrangement with the local authority over his debt.

"I had meetings with Clare County Council, they know the story and we have met and we have talked about it and we're going to sort it out between us," he said.

The local authority refused to comment on the matter.

He confirmed he has not paid back the IMRO debt.

"I haven't heard anything from them, not a thing," he said, but added that he would have "no problem talking to them whatsoever".

IMRO, which is an agency involved in the collection and distribution of music royalties, also declined to comment.

Mr Fitzgerald was upset to be asked about his financial affairs saying that it was "unfair".

"Listen, I'm getting kicked so f*****g much now that you might as well just write away. Ye know it all," he said.

Mr Fitzgerald has had a successful GAA career which includes lifting the Liam McCarthy Cup as Clare hurling goalkeeper on two occasions in the 1990s.

As coach he led the team to its first All-Ireland victory since then in 2013.

He has also bravely spoken out against bullying, revealing his own experience as a teenager.

"I've done some great stuff as well and I don't see ye going to do anything about that. Gas isn't it?," he said when contacted by the Herald last night.

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