"Cillian O'Connor knew what he was doing. He sewed him up..." 2 years ago

"Cillian O'Connor knew what he was doing. He sewed him up..."

Tom Flynn turns, Cillian O'Connor sprints into him.

Joe McQuillan issues the Galway midfielder with a black card. His game is over.

Most people could see that it sure looked like Cillian O'Connor manufactured a situation that unfairly put an opposition player in trouble. But on The GAA Hour, Cian Ward was blaming Tom Flynn for the incident and stated that O'Connor simply brought the matter to the referee's attention.

Whilst the Meath man didn't condone what the Mayo forward did, he still believes it wouldn't have happened if it wasn't for Flynn's initial intentions.

So, along with Wooly and Conán on the football show, the debate raged.

Cian: I think Flynn, initially in fairness, was trying to block O'Connor off and O'Connor absolutely took every advantage he could out of it. As soon as he saw Flynn move towards him and sort of line him up, O'Connor actually ran into him and then Flynn kind of knew, 'oh no, he has me now'. And he had to, at the last second, plead his innocence. Cillian O'Connor is a master craftsman at this kind of stuff. He's the best man I've ever seen to get frees moved up as well. Every time he wins a free, he pretends like he wants to take the free short and he's giving out to the ref and the ref brings it forward. He's a genius when it comes to this sort of stuff.

Wooly: You could clearly see him get Gareth Bradshaw a yellow only 10 minutes previously. He slapped him in the side of the face, he was in his face, he was tormenting Bradshaw. Bradshaw, like an eejit then, just pushed him in the chest. He falls back over but doesn't blatantly fall back over - he falls but gets straight back to his feet like, 'I'm not making a big deal out of this'. Cillian knows how to wind lads up to react but he knows not to react to the provocation himself.

Cian: He has brilliant discipline. He's a brilliant example to lads out there who do tend to lose their cool. He takes all sorts of guff all the time. He takes dirty belts and he's a great bit of stuff. He battled really, really hard against Galway. He's very, very clever at taking the advantage whenever he can.

Conán: Are we being a bit too positive for what he did? He essentially got a guy a black card who didn't really deserve it.

Wooly: It was out of order.

Cian: I think Flynn was looking for it. Flynn was looking to check him and Cillian O'Connor made the most of it. It happens loads of times during games, boys trying to block your run. To my mind, he just brought it to the referee's attention.

Conán: I don't know. I didn't like it.

Wooly: I think Flynn saw him coming and decided he was going to hit him. But then Flynn saw how it was developing and tried to pull out and O'Connor sewed him up.

Cian: O'Connor was cleverer than Flynn.

Wooly: What I would be most concerned about is that everybody who's ever played the game knew what O'Connor was doing in that situation. McQuillan didn't. How did he not know how it transpired?

Cian: To be honest, McQuillan should've just said 'play on and get on with it'.

Conán: The danger of playing like that, I remember the All-Ireland final last year when O'Connor kept dragging John Small back on top of him. But he would take his arm off - very clever - and then put it around his neck again and then take it off and then John Small swings out at his arm. You can get a player sent off for that and then all of a sudden we're up in arms. He knew what he was doing.

Listen to the full debate below from 08:30.