Joe Brolly and Oisin McConville got involved in a heated debate in which the two of them made stinging critiques of one another’s punditry abilities.
Former Derry inter-county footballer Brolly is perhaps the best known and controversial pundit in the GAA, having delivered some golden TV moments in his time, rubbing a few people up the wrong way in doing so.
Former Armagh footballer and fellow GAA pundit McConville joined Brolly on the BBC’s The GAA Social podcast, in which he admitted that he feels like he doesn’t learn much about Gaelic football when listening to the Derry man.
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‘I didn’t feel as if I was learning anything about the game.’
“I always found Joe entertaining but I would have to say that I didn’t feel as if I was learning anything about the game,” McConville started.
“So on that occasion (Brolly’s infamous rant after Sean Cavanagh dragged down Conor McManus), what have I learned about the game? Everyone knew exactly what was after happening. I remember being at that game and being enraged about it.
“I like the passion side of it. Before we started [the podcast], we had 40 minutes and we talked mainly about football. We talked about coaching. Joe was talking formations. We talked a little bit about Dungiven and different things like that.
“There’s coaching background there with you, Joe, am I right? So, why do we not get any of that [in your punditry]?”
Joe Brolly bites back at Oisin McConville.
Brolly did not take too kindly to McConville’s insinuation, and claimed that the former Armagh footballer was disrespectful in suggesting that there is little analysis to be found in his punditry.
“You do get that. I used to do that all the time. I used to work really hard on the video packages,” Brolly commented.
“I used to show how Donegal played, Donegal’s system. I showed exactly how they stacked up zonally, where the weak spots were, where you could get shots off.
“That’s a very disrespectful thing to say. I used to work very hard with that, right up until the bitter end.”
When McConville claimed that he does not remember any of Brolly’s punditry in which he showed how different sides attempted to play, the Derry man came back with a biting response.
“I’ll tell you, I find it very hard to remember any of your punditry. Very, very difficult. I just don’t. It’s grand, but I don’t remember any of it,” Brolly responded.
From there the conversation cooled down a bit, as the two agreed that many Ulster Gaelic football matches were both difficult to analyse and “extract entertainment from”.
Joe Brolly and Oisin McConville’s spat begins at the 18 minute mark in the BBC’s The GAA Social podcast, hosted by Thomas Niblock.