“Bill was booted and John was booted.”
Former pundit Eamon Dunphy has accused RTÉ of being ‘ageist’ in their decision to part company with John Giles in 2016 and Bill O’Herlihy in 2014.
Dunphy worked alongside the pair during his time at the public broadcaster. Liam Brady also involved as the four became synonymous with coverage of football in Ireland.
Eamnon Dunphy on Giles and O’Herlihy.
Speaking on The Mario Rosenstock Podcast, the 75-year-old was asked why he left his position as a pundit with RTÉ in 2018, after 40 years working with the national broadcaster.
“Well, I have to be diplomatic here. Have you seen their offering recently? I didn’t want to be part of that,” Dunphy replied.
Rosenstock then asked about Giles: “Do you think there was an element of ageism in John being offloaded?”
Dunphy: “And Bill was offloaded as well.”
Rosenstock: “Was Bill offloaded?”
Dunphy: “Yeah he announced it as his retirement but Bill was booted and John was booted.”
Rosenstock: “Are you saying Bill O’Herlihy was let go from that job?”.
Dunphy: “Yes. He was a great broadcast journalist. Nobody knows but he was. And John was.”
Dunphy on his exit from RTÉ.
Dunphy said he learned from the exit of his former colleagues and didn’t want the same thing to happen to him when his own deal expired in 2018.
“Yes, it was ageist. It was shocking to witness and be around and I witnessed it over a period of years actually when you add the two guys together,” Dunphy added.
“And I knew they would be coming for me but I managed to you know, retain my self-respect, ask them, ‘Why they were doing this? Why they were wrecking this very good programme? And why they wouldn’t go for the kind of people they could have like Graeme Souness?’
“They didn’t want to know, so I said ‘okay,’ and I became a nuisance and then I left.
“But I had set my podcast up before I left and I don’t regret for one minute leaving.
“I do miss working with Liam and Didi [Hamann] and John and Bill.”