Tipperary men will referee and manage in the same All-Ireland semi-final this weekend as Fergal Horgan has been appointed for Saturday’s clash between Liam Cahill’s Waterford and Kilkenny in Croke Park.
The matter of match officials being involved in games where management hail from the same county was raised by Liam Sheedy following Tipperary’s defeat to Galway in Saturday’s All-Ireland quarter-final. Cahill's coach Michael Bevans also hails from Tipperary.
Sheedy questioned why a Limerick official in Johnny Murphy was asked to take charge of a game when there were two Limerick men on the Galway management team, manager Shane O’Neill and coach John Fitzgerald, and Limerick were waiting in the semi-finals.
“There are loads of referees from various different counties and I just think there was no need to have the situation we had today," he said.
“It should have been a Leinster referee in my view but I have no complaints. Ultimately, the best team with the most scores at the end of the match won but a small bit of common sense in the approach to appointments. Like, there are loads of referees from Leinster and everywhere else.
“It’s not sour grapes in any shape or form and I do not want to take away from Galway, but I do think a little bit of understanding and not trying to compromise people and put them in positions where various counties are still left in the Championship and various counties are involved in the sideline it just makes things a little bit trickier.”
Sheedy’s point was backed by Dónal Óg Cusack on The Sunday Game as well as former All-Ireland final referee Brian Gavin in hiscolumn today: “Sheedy had a point and it’s something that should be considered in the appointments process. Like, what was to stop them putting Paud O’Dwyer in charge of the Galway-Tipperary game and Johnny (Murphy) doing the Clare-Waterford game? It did put Johnny in an awkward position as you look at it but it wouldn’t have made a difference to him.”