Sickening abuse dished out to Offaly's Eamonn Kelly reveal the true price people pay for being a GAA coach
Eamonn Kelly has been under pressure as coach of the Offaly hurling team.
He knows it and everyone who follows the team knows it. The defeat to Westmeath last weekend made sure of it.
"I'm well able to gauge it from where I am," Kelly said before Saturday's game against Carlow. "There is certainly a lot of it, a lot of expectation which brings its own pressures as well."
The 1-17 to 2-11 victory over Carlow at O'Connor Park in Tullamore on Saturday gave Kelly and the team a bit of breathing space.
Offaly manager Eamonn Kelly says he received abusive calls from 'cowards' on private numbers over the past week
— Midlands 103 Sport (@MidlandsSport) May 7, 2016
It put him in a position where he felt he could reveal the full nature of the abuse and, what appears on the outside at least, to be intimidation, that has come his way after some admittedly bad results.
“I don’t ever want to get a week like it again where you have cowards ringing you on private numbers and telling you what they think of you," he said on Saturday.
“The stuff I got thrown at me on social media, I know that goes with the terrain, but we’re trying to do everything we can and the players inside are doing everything in their power.
“We had three lads walk from the panel with a comment that they don’t like where there this thing is going and they don’t want to be associated with it but what you have left in the dressing room there are very honest players and they’re working very very hard."
Social media, for its flaws, is in many ways no different to the bar stool debate. It's people giving their opinions and the option is there to listen to them or not.
But calling a manager from a private number to dish out abuse anonymously? That's a new level of low.