O’Reilly says County had ‘year to forget’

Longford suffered an “annus horibilis” year both on and off the playing field, according to Longford secretary Peter O’Reilly.

Longford suffered an “annus horibilis” year both on and off the playing field, according to Longford secretary Peter O’Reilly.

In his annual report to Convention, scheduled to take place tomorrow (Thursday) night, Mr O’Reilly lamented the county side’s relegation to Division 3, its early exit from the Leinster Senior Championship and the “disgraceful scenes” which marred the end of Longford’s All-Ireland qualifier against Wexford in July.

Mr O’Reilly also raised the issue of the failed plan for the Centre of Excellence at Lyneen in Killashee.

He said the decision to shelve the plan was made following “an exhaustive process” by Project Managers Collins Boyd Engineering. Their subsequent report was submitted to Coiste Chontae.

“Coiste Chontae agreed that given the facts now in our possession, this project was not financially viable,” Mr O’Reilly said.

In an indication of just how controversial the plan became, Mr O’ Reilly also spoke of the ‘personal attacks’ that some executive members endured during the summer.

“Isn’t it a pity that this decision couldn’t have been made in a calmer manner and without recourse to the personal attacks that were made on a number of members of the executive at different stages over the course of the summer.”

Referring to one occasion in particular, Mr O’Reilly asked:

“Have these people really got the interests of Longford GAA at heart or is it a case that they were seeking a monument to themselves at clubs’ expense?”

Besides reserving a special note of praise for the now departed Glenn Ryan and his backroom team, Mr O’Reilly also had harsh words for those behind the mass brawl during Longford’s second round qualifier with Wexford.

That episode cost the county board €3,500, financial punishment O’Reilly is still smarting over.

“Is it not time to amend our match regulations and explore the implementation of penalties which hits those involved the hardest and would stop these unsavoury incidents immediately?”