Steven Poacher has announced his decision to step down from his role as coach with the Carlow senior footballers.
The county Down native worked alongside Turlough O’Brien for the past three seasons that saw the Barrowsiders gain league promotion for the first time in 34 years. He also played an integral role in Carlow’s shock defeat of Kildare in 2018 that saw them reach a Leinster semi-final.
Earlier this year, Poacher spoke to Pundit Arena about his time in Carlow and how the people, in particular, Turlough O’Brien, had left a lasting effect on him.
“I can’t speak highly enough of Turlough I really can’t. It would be remiss of me to not mention his personality because that can go missing in sport, it can be overlooked. Sometimes we’re very cynical and we treat players like pieces of meat and treat each other like robots, but for me, there’s a person behind the player, there’s a person behind the manager and there’s a person behind the coach,” Poacher said.
A massive thank you to everyone at @Carlow_GAA for the last 3years, players, management, supporters & most of all @TurloughCarlow a truly wonderful man! A hugely difficult decision to step away, it's been some journey! Full of wonderful memories, forever in my heart 🙌 ❤️ 💛 💚 pic.twitter.com/jpey3VgwyJ
— Steven Poacher (@Stevie_Poacher) November 10, 2019
“When people are very critical on social media and in the media about coaches and players, they can get very personal, and I’ve had my fair share of personal attacks from different individuals over the past year, I don’t think they realise the work that goes in I don’t think they see the effort and time that goes in and I don’t think they realise these people have families, wives, children, who are reading this an listening to this and who see this abuse going on. There’s nearly a resentment and bitterness towards seeing people do well.
“I’ve met some wonderful people on and off the field, people who have made me, the wife and the children very, very much at home and have really looked after us every time we have come down, but when you see the progress a county can make, especially coming from bottom of Division 4 a few years ago to all of a sudden, beating Kildare in the Championship, it’s a massive turnaround.
“These couple of years in Carlow hopefully it’ll have ingrained a level of belief in the younger players that they can compete and they have a team to be really proud of.”