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Cavanagh plays down expenses row as he reveals board paid up

By Declan Bogue

It was left to Tyrone captain Sean Cavanagh to have the final word on a rather puzzling and extremely public spat over the cost of foam rollers and resistance bands for the Tyrone squad.

It was reported that the squad were asked for £15 each to make up the cost. Cavanagh does not deny this and adds: "There was a tentative request for it, but it was tentatively refused. That's the best way of putting it."

Asked if there was extra pressure to deliver a result after the ill-feeling and counter-claims that had blown around the story, he stated: "I wouldn't say there was extra pressure.

"It was something that happened and to be honest most of the players had a bit of a laugh about it.

"I still have no idea where it come from and that is genuine. It was something that happened and nobody paid the £15, the county board covered the full expenses of it.

"Look, it obviously hit the media but in house it wasn't something we worried very much about and it was a case of head down and move on and have a laugh about it."

The main business of the day was two more league points and a relaxed Mickey Harte, knowing that they are safe in the top flight, with a reasonably healthy squad heading into three massive weekends. Perhaps four if they make it to a league final.

He still was perplexed at the continual difficulty with interpreting a black card as two of his men - Ronan McNamee and Darren McCurry - were sent off the pitch.

"It is too difficult to interpret in a consistent way," he began. "But sure the people who brought that in ought to have thought of that before they forced it in. And if they had seen that and the difficulties in trialling it, they might have adjusted the terminology in how you pick up a black card. Maybe they should revisit it. I seen lots of people getting black cards for fouls that do not fit into the categories.

"You know that it is an issue when the rule came in that you can't even contest a black card until you have three! That in itself tells you that they are being dished out wrongly. Now you have to wait until you get three of them so you can contest why you got the other two."

And he wasn't too concerned about their lack of goals, only one coming in the first four games to date.

"Goals will come. What did we get, 19 points? I don't think that is a bad return. We can't have everything.

"I think any day you get 19 scores it will take a serious team to beat you."

His opposite number, Cavan manager Mattie McGleenan tried to stay positive.

"At this point I am not even worried about relegation, it is just about improving the performance; for 35 minutes we played great and then we capitulated in the second-half and that is something we have to address," he warned.

"There was 12 frees conceded (in the first half) and you can't do that at this level. At least for four or five of those frees, I don't think Tyrone were going anywhere and we were just too aggressive."

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