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Monday 24 July 2017

Brennan: Important for Kilkenny that Cody stays at helm

Kilkenny U21s boss Eddie Brennan was in Croke Park to launch the ‘EirGrid Moments in Time’ campaign, as part of its timing partnership with the GAA. Photo by Brendan Moran/Sportsfile
Kilkenny U21s boss Eddie Brennan was in Croke Park to launch the ‘EirGrid Moments in Time’ campaign, as part of its timing partnership with the GAA. Photo by Brendan Moran/Sportsfile

The stats doing the rounds on Saturday evening told their own story.

Kilkenny's defeat to Waterford - a first since 1959 - meant this would be just the fourth time in the 19 seasons of Brian Cody's reign that the Cats haven't been in the All-Ireland SHC final.

It heralded their earliest Championship exit since 1996.

And this is the first year Kilkenny haven't played Championship hurling on a Sunday since 1887.

All of which underlined the outrageousness of Kilkenny's success under Cody yet a small few took it as a sign as a need for change.

Kilkenny manager Brian Cody. Photo by Brendan Moran/Sportsfile
Kilkenny manager Brian Cody. Photo by Brendan Moran/Sportsfile

"I don't see the benefit of changing it," says Eddie Brennan, Kilkenny's Under-21 manager and therefore theoretically at least, in the frame to fill the biggest pair of shoes imaginable should Cody decide to walk away.

Revitalise

"I don't know of too many lads around Kilkenny who are looking to take that job so I think my opinion is that it's probably important that Brian stays there because he knows what he has.

"I think his backroom team, particularly Mick Dempsey and them, know the set-up.

"They know what's there and particularly if he was to turn around and look back on the squad he has, I'd say next year they can reset and go again and revitalise the team somewhat but, yeah, I fully expect Brian to be back there next year."

The only question it seems is whether Cody himself has the desire to keep going.

On Saturday in Thurles, he demonstrated again the burning enthusiasm he brings to the job in that sideline spat with Derek McGrath.

"The man knows his own mind better than anyone and he'll go back and reflect on it," Brennan reckons.

"He'll certainly look at himself first and foremost.

"He'll then look at the profile of players he has at his disposal and say can he work with those, can he mould those again and I don't think there'll be any pressure on him from within the county, I don't see too many putting their hand up to take the job off him so I would certainly say he'll be there next year, albeit he might look so say: 'How can I freshen things up?'

"Looking in from the outside, maybe with how the boys have played, maybe they're just lacking a small bit at the moment.

"Maybe confidence has hit a bit of a low and maybe they're just drained and need to be revitalised somewhat."

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