David Power: League the priority for Tipperary footballers in 2021

Power believes there’ll be little pressure on Tipperary to retain their Munster SFC title because “people won’t be expecting much out of us”
David Power: League the priority for Tipperary footballers in 2021

DAY OF DAYS: An elated David Power after Tipperary’s victory over Cork in last year’s Munster SFC final at Páirc Uí Chaoimh. Picture: Ray McManus/Sportsfile

David Power believes there’ll be little pressure on Tipperary to retain the provincial football title because “people won’t be expecting much out of us”.

Speaking ahead of Monday’s draw for the 2021 Munster SFC, Premier boss Power claimed there’ll be “no pressure on us really” with one bookmaker pricing them as 16/1 long shots.

Cork are second-favourites, despite losing to Tipp in last November’s final, while Kerry are the strong favourites despite slipping up to Cork in 2020.

Power told Radio Kerry’s Terrace Talk that the key to a successful season for Tipp will be performing well in the league and securing promotion from Division 3.

“We’re not even looking towards the Championship, the league is our big priority this year,” said Power.

“We want to get out of Division 3. There’s no point going along beating Cork, Clare, teams from Division 2 and then we fail to turn up against the Wicklows, Offalys, and Limericks that we’re going to be playing in the league.

“Every game in four or five weeks’ time, whenever the first match is going to be, that’s going to be like our Championship.

I think if we can have a good league we can roll into a Championship with confidence. I think there’ll be no pressure on us really. I know we’ll be defending champions and all of that but people won’t be expecting much out of us.

“The league for us is a big priority and I’m not going to hide that fact. For Tipperary to improve we need to be getting out of Division 3, that’s our number on target.”

Tipp eventually exited last year’s Championship at the All-Ireland semi-final stage in early December, losing to Mayo 5-20 to 3-13.

“People go on about the Mayo game — if we got the two early goals I think it was going to be a completely different game,” said Power. 

“We went at it, we went very attacking, we played football and that’s our nature. People say should you have played a sweeper? That’s not in our nature, we play football.”

On the issue of Dublin and Monaghan being recently pulled in by authorities over breaches of training regulations, Power was asked if he felt managers are under pressure to push rules to the limit.

“I think there’s a lot of managers under pressure,” he said. “This is where the GAA is really bordering on definitely semi-professional anyway, if not professional in some cases.

“The amount of time involved, I see it myself. I own my own accountancy practice, I run my practice and I have eight people working for me and then you’re trying to keep a county team going and then I’ve a young child at home and my wife.

“It’s very, very tough going. There’s huge pressures on but the big thing for me is I just enjoy it. But yeah, look, there is pressures on and it was unfortunate what happened over the last couple of weeks. It hasn’t been good for the whole profile of the GAA.”

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