Kildare manager Cian O’Neill says family life suffers from the all-consuming role as an inter-county manager.
Speaking on the RTÉ GAA Podcast, O’Neill was offering his thoughts on Waterford hurling manager Derek McGrath’s decision to step away from his teaching role to concentrate on the team.
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McGrath has extended his parental leave from his secondary school English teaching job at De La Salle, which he believes he was beginning to neglect, and O’Neill says he understands why the Déise boss made the decision.
O’Neill is the Director of Sport at Cork Institute of Technology and makes round trips to Kildare at least three times a week. He says that he simply works around his schedule as best he can.
“I’m a school teacher by trade and I know exactly the challenges that are there for Derek,” he told the podcast. “I do appreciate how difficult it is.
“I’m very fortunate in my job. They [CIT] are very, very supportive.
“You simply make up the hours. Mondays, Wednesdays or Fridays, it could be nine, ten o’clock sometimes when I get out of work, just because I might leave at four o’clock on a Tuesday and Thursday.
“It’s a balancing act...I try to balance the hours.”
“It’s my marriage that really suffers. And relationships around friends and family"
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On the pitch things are moving in the right direction, but away from it, O’Neill says it can be tricky trying to maintain relationships with the demands on an inter-county manager.
“It’s my marriage that really suffers. And relationships around friends and family because your job is your job and you have to give everything to it," he said.
“When you are involved in the inter-county scene, you’re just totally consumed by it. Every second of every day.
“If I’m being honest, I have to look at home, my family and my wife, and that’s really what suffers.
"You have to be very careful not to lose sight of that. We try to make the most of the time we have together.”