"The only time I ever got a bollocking off Mickey was after one of our busiest events of the year." 5 months ago

"The only time I ever got a bollocking off Mickey was after one of our busiest events of the year."

Conor Grimes hopes that Mickey Harte stays with Louth for 'many years to come.'

The Tyrone man took over the Louth job in 2020 and, step-by-step, the Wee county have been improving ever since.


Having followed up a solid League with a run to the Leinster final, this season has been their best in a long time and when it's put to him, Grimes gives a lot of the credit to their legendary manager.

The 68-year-old has been there, he's done that - but aside from the communication and organisational skills which he's obviously honed and perfected through the years, Grimes says that there's something much more important that Harte brings to the table.

It's his genuine nature as a person.

"His communication is great," says Grimes, "he makes it very clear where we're at and what we need to work on as a group.


"Everything is very well organised. Most importantly though, his values are very strong, what he believes in, and what he believes we should believe in as a group.

"Those values are very easy to buy into as players, values you'd want to have in your life, even the way he supports myself and my wife in our business even - and that's not just for football reasons, he's genuinely interested in our product.

"He's a really good person and we're privileged to have him and hopefully we have him for many years to come."



The product Grimes and his wife produce is Spoonful Botanical - a joint-support concoction of herbs and spices, which comes in the form of a jarred chutney type substance - and the half forward says that his manager supports him in every aspect of the business.

"It comes back to Mickey Harte, he's really understanding of my situation with work and the business and he gives you a bit of leeway.


"It was the only time I ever got a bollocking off Mickey after one of our busiest events of the year, around Christmas time, I tried to play an O'Byrne Cup game after the event.

"I never mentioned anything to him and he knew by my performance that I wasn't up to par and he asked me, I told him, and he gave me a dressing down for trying to juggle both," says Allianz ambassador Grimes.

"And that's the kind of person he is, he's understanding when it comes to that kind of thing and he understands the business is important to myself and my family - you get more out of players that way I feel."

Business is booming off-the-field as well as on-the-field, where Grimes has enjoyed the switch to the half forward line. Tall and with a very strong build, he may not be your typical half forward but he's worked on his endurance and stamina this year to ensure he'd be able for the challenge.


"Originally, the full forward line was my position but this year I've transitioned to out around the middle.

"The switch came about organically and Mickey saw something in me running directly at defences rather than with my back to goal.

"I went back inside for a couple of O'Byrne Cup games, but in training and once the League got up and running, we were working towards me playing more out around the middle.

"A lot of work had to go in to be able to play out around the middle for seventy minutes.

"I worked hard with our S and C coach Ciaran Sloan and with our nutritionist Aaron Courtney, revamping my style of play from short, sharp stuff to more of an endurance based game.

"We got a huge pre-season into us. Staying injury free was massive too in maintaining the levels. So I've been fortunate with injuries, touch-wood, and that allows you to keep pushing your fitness levels.

"It's paid off I think. It's probably been my best season in a Louth jersey so I'm enjoying it."


Related links:

Allianz, the proud new sponsors of the GAA All-Ireland Senior Football Championship, released the third episode of its ‘Write Your Own Story’ series, which features Louth footballer Conor Grimes.