"I'll be brutally honest" - Jason McAteer cuts Brian Kerr's Ireland reign to ribbons 3 months ago

"I'll be brutally honest" - Jason McAteer cuts Brian Kerr's Ireland reign to ribbons

"I'll be brutally honest here."

Jason McAteer is fortunate that he has a huge chunk of credit in the Republic of Ireland footballing bank, as he has come after national treasure Brian Kerr with a stark, brutal admission.

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The former Bolton Wanderers midfielder, Ireland international and 1996 FA Cup finalist was on Qatari broadcaster BeIn Sports, along with host Richard Keys and pundits Andy Gray and Nigel de Jong, this evening.

The pre-match discussion - ahead of Manchester City and FC Copenhagen, in the Champions League - was about manager's gaining the respect of players, and how hard it can often prove for those that have not featured at a high level.

McAteer, who played 52 times for Ireland, including two World Cup jaunts, got deep on his time with the team when League of Ireland stalwart Brian Kerr took over from Mick McCarthy. The comments were unforgiving, but it gives an insight into how tough Kerr would have found it with many of his players. McAteer said:

"I'll be brutally honest here... we were talking [before] about Brian Kerr... I played under Jack Charlton, who had won the World Cup with England and who instantly had the respect of the whole dressing room. We looked up to him.

"Jack's tactics weren't great but they worked for us, we looked up to him and we played that way, and we got success [qualifying for three major tournaments]. Then Mick McCarthy came in. He had [captained] Ireland at the World Cup and was a big figure in the country. He then became our manager, and we looked up to him and did what he wanted to do. We ended up running through brick walls for him, got success and ended up getting to the [2002] World Cup.

"Then Brian Kerr took over, and I got to admit, and I'll say it now, I'm looking at this fella, thinking, 'What have you actually done?'

"Were were having words with each other and I'm thinking, 'You're trying to tell me to do this and do that. What have you won in the game? What have you done in the game? Where have you played? Who have you played for? And you're trying to implement these... and talk down to players'."

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Brian Kerr's Ireland record

Brian Kerr, a well-respected footballing figure in Irish circles and a popular pundit on Virgin Media, among other broadcasters, won two League of Ireland titles with St Patrick's Athletic in the 1990s.

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He then led Ireland to underage success at U16 and U18 levels, before delivering a third-place finish at the 1997 World Youth Championships.

Kerr was appointed Ireland senior men's manager in November 2002 but failed to lead his country to a European Championship or World Cup before he departed the role in late 2005.

Jason McAteer played at the 1994 and 2002 World Cups for Ireland. His greatest personal contributions came in scoring qualifier goals against The Netherlands, home and away, including the winner at Lansdowne Road in 2001.

There has already been a reaction to his comments on Kerr, with a Wikipedia user updating the former Liverpool and Blackburn star's page:

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Jason McAteer

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