Wednesday 19 September 2018

Kerry star James O'Donoghue: Some of the things written about us were absolutely horrendous

James O'Donoghue
James O'Donoghue

THE charge: Kerry using their sporting stature and native pazzazz to influence referees.

The accuser: Former Cork defender, Conor McCarthy in a newspaper column last week.

The defendant: James O'Donoghue.

"Wasn't there a big campaign about respect for each other, the referee and the players, and then you shake the referees hand and you are influencing his decisions?" O'Donoghue pleaded.

"I think the articles written, some of them were absolutely horrendous.

"You might see something on the field when you are in the stand and you make something out of it in your head which isn't the case.


"The referee could want to say to you 'calm down a bit there', but then in the stand everyone thinks the player is trying to influence the referee, the referee's decision. That is not the case at all and I think it has been blown out of proportion.

"The referees probably deserve more respect than that to think a player having a word and a wink is going to influence his decision.

"That is not true."

Though Kerry were easily the better of the teams in their win on Saturday night in Killarney, O'Donoghue's penalty in the drawn game was a point of consternation for the Rebels.

"I know it was a contentious decision," O'Donoghue accepted.

"Would I have given a penalty? I am not sure.

"There was a coming together and the referee had a decision to make. It was very 50/50.

"One team can be lucky and the other unlucky there. Either way it was always going to be a tough call.

"I went down and was thinking 'he could give a free here'.

"It ended up being inside the box. I had probably two minutes between the penalty been given and hitting it.


"It is a concentration thing, you have to tune in and don't let anyone get inside your head, don't let anyone get inside your ear and just make sure that you put the penalty away. At that time, we were three points down. It wasn't panic stations by any means.

"I think we would have tipped on a few points if we hadn't got the penalty," O'Donoghue concluded. "It is a nice boost to get a goal when you are down because it completely flips it."


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