Peter Creedon hits out at rumours as he withdraws candidacy for Laois role

Rory Delaney

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Rory Delaney

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rory@leinsterexpress.ie

Peter Creedon hits out at drinking rumours as he withdraws candidacy for Laois role

Laois manager Peter Creedon.

Outgoing Laois senior football manager Peter Creedon will not seek a second year at the helm, meaning Laois are on the look out for a fourth manager in four years.

Creedon released a statement, reported in today's Irish Examiner, which confirmed he will not seek another year in charge, while also hitting out at rumours surrounding the panel.

Creedon had come in for heavy criticism at last week's meeting of the Laois County Board, with some delegates openly calling for him not to be re-appointed. There were also allegations made that some of the team had been drinking prior to games, and this is something Creedon has denied. 

"Although we had the support of the county board executive and the Laois players, we feel staying on would be divisive for the county, given the nature of a recent board meeting" said Creedon.

"This type of generalisation of there being a drink culture in the squad is deeply unfair and divisive given that we were aware of only one incident where three players were absent from an early training session on Easter Monday.

"The management were not aware of this issue and, in recent discussions with players, we found they were at a loss to explain or substantiate such rumours.

"If anyone has the names, dates, times, and venues of these alleged discrepancies, we would be grateful if they would furnish them immediately to the county board chairman."

While the allegations of four players drinking was one cause for concern among some delegates, more delegates felt Creedon hadn't done enough on the field to merit a second year in charge. Laois were relegated to Division 4 of the NFL, and suffered heavy defeats to Clare and Kildare in the championship.

"It was disappointing,” Creedon conceded. “However, inches of a post were the difference to us being relegated or staying up and throughout the league we had a number of injuries to contend with.

“Trying to blood new players proved hard as well — but we accept that results were poor and that an inability to keep 15 players on the pitch ultimately led to relegation.

“The training was upped for the championship, though, and our players responded with an emphatic victory over Longford. The improved levels of fitness and spirit in the team and our game-plan worked well on the day.

“Two weeks later, unfortunately, our second half performance against Kildare was very flat. We regrouped in the qualifiers and left Aughrim with a second championship win of the year but then Clare proved to be too good for us in our last game of the season.

“Again, I felt our second half showing was again very flat once we were reduced to 14 men.”

Creedon also claimed there was a lack of understanding in the county about the problems facing Laois. "Constant reference to the 2003 All-Ireland minor winning teams back-boning the current senior team is now irrelevant.

"Unfortunately, as we tried to bring new players in, we found a lack of understanding from keyboard warriors, some members of local media and some club delegates. A fairer analysis of results over the last four years will show Laois have slipped and are now playing catch-up with Kildare and Meath, in particular, in Leinster."