Tyrone great Sean Cavanagh has waded right into the Mickey Harte debate after his team’s 1-18 to 0-18 All-Ireland SFC semifinal defeat to Kerry on Sunday – and his view is simple.
Cavanagh wants Harte to quit after this setback, an opinion that has been lambasted by former teammate Owen Mulligan among others. Not that Cavanagh is bothered despite three All-Ireland wins in 17 years for Harte.
“He’s been an amazing servant for the county. The three All-Ireland titles. But the reality is that the likes of Art McRory and Eugene McKenna were there for a long time before him and did amazing work as well,” Cavanagh told RTE.
“There does come a time when that baton has to be passed on. He’s given his life to Tyrone football. But there are other guys there. The likes of Fergal Logan, Peter Canavan, Brian Dooher are big names in Tyrone football. And the core of that team today won an under-21 title with those guys. Maybe it’s time for someone like that in. No one can fault Mickey Harte but time moves on.”
Harte assured reporters after Sunday’s game that he has the will and the hunger to remain on board for another year, but any decision will be left until well after the dust has settled on this defeat.
Immediately after the game he was more concerned with some of the decisions made by referee Maurice Deegan.
“He (Deegan) obviously played a big part in it because he was very important, he made a lot of decisions. If you felt he made the decisions good for you you’d say, ‘Hey that’s great,’ and if you felt he didn’t do them good for you you’d say, ‘I felt that was a bit harsh.’ You certainly would have looked a few decisions and thought they were harsh,” Harte told Sky Sports.