It’s a common reaction. Every amateur International or provincial select criticism follows.
Accusations of bias are never too far off either. There is out cry from all quarters.
It gets to the stage that if all the players who those on social media suggest it was ‘disgraceful’ to leave out were selected squads of 100s would be going to certain tournaments.
Granted there will always be difference of opinions and managers may not always make the right calls, but there is no doubt each manager wants to be successful and by virtue of that desire must be picking a squad he feels will secure success.
When speaking to Bluebell United’s website this week new Leinster Senior League manager Andy Noonan gave some interesting insight to the selection process.
The Bluebell United boss and Saturday side goal scorer made some interesting points ahead of his first Michael Ward Trophy weekend.
The manager admits the process was difficult and reveals it’s more about picking the strongest squad than the 20 best LSL players.
When picking a team he feels can prevent the Munster Senior League making it three wins in a row he claims things like balance and style of play had to be taken into account.
Asked if he found it hard to pick just 20 players from the Intermediate ranks he said:
“Yes, I did but the most difficult thing was finding the balance. There are 4 or 5 players that come to mind that could easily be in the squad but it is about balance for the team and what best suit the approach. There are several players out there and others are thinking, why are they not in the squad. There are only 20 positions in the squad and I could have picked another 20 players that are good enough but unfortunately that is the way it is.”
Another issue with any Provincial or indeed amateur select is the amount of time the manager gets with the players.
Noonan was delighted with the chance to work in top quality facilities provided by Abbotstown, but would have liked more time with the players picked from various clubs.
“Preparations have gone okay, I would have liked to have a bit more time with the squad but a couple of things have gone against us in that sense with the Ireland game disrupting this weeks training but every time I have asked the lads to report, I have been really happy with attitude in the sessions so all in all I am happy with how things have gone. It is just about getting the lads used to each other and building a good team rapport within such a small period of time,” he explained before addressing Abbotstown.
” (It’s) brilliant, one of the best facilities in the country. The pitch was made available to us and it was in unbelievable condition and it is something that I will be looking to take advantage more of during my reign as the LSL manager and use it throughout the season rather than having to assemble a squad so close the tournament.”