Diane Caldwell absolutely slams Vera Pauw in sensational press-conference 5 months ago

Diane Caldwell absolutely slams Vera Pauw in sensational press-conference

Diane Caldwell has become the first Ireland player to really stick the boot in on Vera Pauw since her dismissal as Ireland women's manager.

Pauw, Ireland's most successful women's football manager, was dismissed a couple of weeks ago and in the immediate aftermath, there was nothing but radio silence. The players said nothing. The FAI said nothing.

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Eventually, in a press-conference last week, the association's top brass addressed the dismissal and the factors that led to it. Still, if it was the nitty-gritty you were looking for, you would find yourself in the dark.

Until now.

The Irish women's team are taking on Northern Ireland in the UEFA Nations League this Saturday and ahead of it, a press conference took place on Monday afternoon. Captain Katie McCabe was front and centre, as she spoke to the Irish media about her much-debated relationship with Pauw but, no doubt about it, it was veteran defender Diane Caldwell who stole the show.

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The 35-year-old slammed Vera Pauw and her management team in the press-conference, claiming that whatever the Republic of Ireland achieved under Pauw, they achieved 'in spite of her being coach.'

"I think there were many areas that could have been better, yes, under her tenure," Caldwell said, when asked about the professionalism.

"I think our preparations for games could have been better, physical preparation, opponent analysis, match tactics, in-game match tactics, changes, systems of play.

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"I think a group of players that were destined for success came together at the right time," she said.

Caldwell said that the players approached Pauw over a number of issues but were unable to find a resolution.

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"From my position as a pretty experienced player, I don't think it was up to the standard expected at international level.

"I think the results, performances that we got, were in spite of Vera being coach.

"We approached her many times about professionalising (sic) many aspects, but it was hard to get change."

Caldwell, who made one brief stoppage-time appearance in the World Cup, was part of Pauw's 'leadership group' but still felt that there was little that could be done.

"You can only say and try to change so much," she said.

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