Munster - next headache for the IRFU?

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darkside lightside
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Munster - next headache for the IRFU?

Post by darkside lightside » Fri Feb 17, 2012 5:40 pm

I went on to mf.com during the Tommy saga , in order to chortle at all the deluded ‘insiders’ who were confidently claiming that Tommy was on his way there, interesting to see quite a lot of criticism heading the way of the ‘management’ – compared with the supposedly more professional managements in Ulster and Leinster.

That obviously is arguable in the case of Ulster, as you can see if you around here enough :D ; in fairness Leinster certainly seem to run a pretty tight ship, and have done a great job in terms of building and sustaining top-notch coaching tickets, squads and importantly, bringing punters through the gates in a big way. But you can see why, just considering squad development over the last couple of years, Munster do appear to be lagging. For all that Humph may be criticised for, recruitment has been outstanding – consider that we have brought BJ, Mueller, Pienaar, Wannenberg, Afoa, Payne and Terblanche into the club, compared with Borlase, du Preez, Tuitupou, Chambers, Tokula – a couple of reasonable players there, but a big gulf in class.

As well as a mediocre recent track record in recruiting externally, Munster have also had problems in its academy, which has failed to produce enough new players of the calibre of the old guard they need to replace – all of which has seen them become increasingly dependent on the ageing core of the squad which has served them so well over the last decade. The squad is then padded out with middling players who are handed contracts but don’t feature meaningfully for Munster – the main beneficiary seems to be the local AIL clubs..

Financially, while the picture is pretty opaque as ever with the IRFU, we know that they’re in arrears with the repayments on the Thomond loan. Attendances are down this year (as they are for most clubs in Europe). But to make matters worse for themselves, Munster are saddled with the ridiculous duplication of personnel and facilities due to the Cork/Limerick politicking. I only properly realised the absurd extent of this when I read an interview with Keatley earlier this season, ans they asked him what it was like working alongside ROG, and he replied that yeah it was great, though he didn’t train with him that much because he was based in Limerick and ROG was Cork!!! And also there were the rumours of some of the ‘big-ticket’ signings from the past being funded by local businessmen – something that I don’t think is desirable for a business – to rely on, effectively, charity, or a sugar-daddy’s goodwill is not a good basis for a sustainable business model.

So throw it all together and what do you get – well it’s kind of hard to say, but you don’t have to strain your imagination too much to see a bit of a looming headache for IRFU/Munster.. in my day job I deal with distressed companies, and there are quite a few warning flags here – longer-term strategic planning (eg. academy) neglected during ‘good times’; lack of cost discipline (wasteful, duplicated facilities and overhead); empire-building/sacred cows (the Limerick/Cork arm-wrestle)

In fairness it would take a brave man to write them off, on the field at least – once again they’re at the boss end of the domestic and European tournaments, however there are only so many years left in the legs of ROG, POC, DOC, Howlett, Wallace etc. The big headache would be if results on the pitch take a dive next season or the one after, the squad is weakened dramatically by retirements/injuries of the oldies, the public vote with their feet… The IRFU has quite a lot on its plate already – resolving the rapid decline in fortunes of the national side under an increasingly ineffectual-looking coaching ticket; hoping that the Ulster-boosting pays dividends and brings them back to the top table; figuring out what to do with Connacht – are they going to have to add Munster to the list in a year or two?
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Re: Munster - next headache for the IRFU?

Post by brianc » Fri Feb 17, 2012 5:48 pm

darkside lightside wrote: in my day job I deal with distressed companies,
Yes, but were they distressed before you started dealing with them :P

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Re: Munster - next headache for the IRFU?

Post by ardsrugbyards » Fri Feb 17, 2012 6:13 pm

ROG & POC are holding the whole thing together when they hang up the boots, who knows what sort of a team they will be.

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Re: Munster - next headache for the IRFU?

Post by Snipe Watson » Fri Feb 17, 2012 7:09 pm

ardsrugbyards wrote:ROG & POC are holding the whole thing together when they hang up the boots, who knows what sort of a team they will be.
The ass will fall out of it and oh how I will laugh.
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Re: Munster - next headache for the IRFU?

Post by breakdown » Fri Feb 17, 2012 7:18 pm

Snipe Watson wrote:
ardsrugbyards wrote:ROG & POC are holding the whole thing together when they hang up the boots, who knows what sort of a team they will be.
The ass will fall out of it and oh how I will laugh.
Dont worry, the superstar will be there :thumright:
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Re: Munster - next headache for the IRFU?

Post by BaggyTrousers » Fri Feb 17, 2012 7:20 pm

brianc wrote:
darkside lightside wrote: in my day job I deal with distressed companies,
Yes, but were they distressed before you started dealing with them :P
A question with a high quality level of malicious intent Brian if I may say so :lol:

An awful lot of waffle and undoubtedly some facts but then you're not the only one does that DL :wink: Simple fact is that with the alleged dearth of young talent they have coped extremely well on the playing front this year with some pretty heavy injuries, particularly in the backrow and in have stepped guys and done a job - young O'Mahony & Tommy O'Donnell was also doing pretty well until he got injured.

The biggest thing Munster have to contend with on the pitch will be the loss of leadership that POC & ROG bring to them as much if not more than their skill. Repeating myself I believe man for man we are better than Munster this year when at strength but that may not be enough at TP to overcome their awesome will to win.

DL you do well to be cautious of writing them off, they are producing young players who have been able to step up when required with the likes of Murray,O'Mahony & Zebo making strides and others getting there like Danny Barnes and a few in the pack. Like most Irish teams it is the prop situation that will be a major headache, an area where Ulster may be a little ahead of the game.

Snipe, you really should know better, safer bet that the Brennan will fall out of your trousers quicker if you expel that amount of hot air. :lol: :lol: :lol: :wink:
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Re: Munster - next headache for the IRFU?

Post by Snipe Watson » Fri Feb 17, 2012 7:39 pm

Once the great man and his snattery wee mate retire, the state of Turnipstan will degenerate into chaos and disarray.

Look how the mighty have fallen they will say; brought to their knees and held in subjection by the Pienaarite hordes from beyond the Black Pig's Dyke.

And I will laugh
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Re: Munster - next headache for the IRFU?

Post by rocky » Fri Feb 17, 2012 8:01 pm

Strikes me we're getting a wee bit ahead of ourselves here, people. I would have thought we should have learned not to write them off too quickly and our results against them over the last decade haven't been exactly earth-shattering. When we play them, they should have POC, Doc, Ryan, Coughlan, O'Mahony, Botha, Varley and Du Preez in the pack - not to be taken lightly, I think. They probably have three years until POC goes and a lot can happen in terms of bringing people through and recruiting well. I will look forward with great anticipation to our match with them and, when we're obviously and consistently better, I'll still support them against any non-Irish sides as usual.
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Re: Munster - next headache for the IRFU?

Post by Dave » Sat Feb 18, 2012 1:43 am

O'Leary signing for Perpignan so the future not all bad for the turnips.
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Re: Munster - next headache for the IRFU?

Post by scrum5 » Sat Feb 18, 2012 4:48 pm

Check out Sky 162, 28 minutes gone and Munster away to Treviso score 24 nil Munster, some headache for the IRFU....
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Re: Munster - next headache for the IRFU?

Post by ruckover » Sat Feb 18, 2012 5:03 pm

When POC and ROG go they'll struggle. ROG will be hard to replace, Keatley won't fill that gap. Ryan and O'Callaghan will be able to patch up most of the hole created by POC though.

They need a better recruitment system as we've been saying, or they'll struggle big style.
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Re: Munster - next headache for the IRFU?

Post by Ulster throw in » Sat Feb 18, 2012 6:52 pm

Guys we are getting waaaaayyyyyy ahead of ourselves. Munster won all their HC games. How many did we? They are at the top of the PRO12 table (again) where are we? They have won away in Wales and England this year. Have we??
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Re: Munster - next headache for the IRFU?

Post by Shan » Sun Feb 19, 2012 3:29 am

Snipe Watson wrote:Once the great man and his snattery wee mate retire, the state of Turnipstan will degenerate into chaos and disarray.

Look how the mighty have fallen they will say; brought to their knees and held in subjection by the Pienaarite hordes from beyond the Black Pig's Dyke.

And I will laugh
Away with you Snipe ya big ballbag. POC and ROG both have another couple of seasons left. By the time they are ready to move on we'll have the replacements sorted.

Sure for feck sake didn't we lose half the team over the past 2-3 years yet here we are again with the latest batch and top of the ERC class.

We shall go on till the end, we shall fight in Ireland, we shall fight o'er the seas and oceans, we shall fight with growing confidence and growing strength in the scrum, we shall defend our province whatever the cost may be, we shall fight at the breakdown, we shall fight in the lineout, we shall fight on the ground and in the air, we shall fight on the tryline, we shall never surrender.

And I might just have to set up a little fight with you on Easter Sunday if you don't stop being such a langer.

>TH >TH
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Re: Munster - next headache for the IRFU?

Post by scrum5 » Sun Feb 19, 2012 11:34 am

Shan wrote:
Snipe Watson wrote:Once the great man and his snattery wee mate retire, the state of Turnipstan will degenerate into chaos and disarray.

Look how the mighty have fallen they will say; brought to their knees and held in subjection by the Pienaarite hordes from beyond the Black Pig's Dyke.

And I will laugh
Away with you Snipe ya big ballbag. POC and ROG both have another couple of seasons left. By the time they are ready to move on we'll have the replacements sorted.

Sure for feck sake didn't we lose half the team over the past 2-3 years yet here we are again with the latest batch and top of the ERC class.

We shall go on till the end, we shall fight in Ireland, we shall fight o'er the seas and oceans, we shall fight with growing confidence and growing strength in the scrum, we shall defend our province whatever the cost may be, we shall fight at the breakdown, we shall fight in the lineout, we shall fight on the ground and in the air, we shall fight on the tryline, we shall never surrender.

And I might just have to set up a little fight with you on Easter Sunday if you don't stop being such a langer.

>TH >TH
Whilst Shan might be speaking tongue in cheek, he has hit the nail on the head, the difference between Munster and Ulster is FIGHT. Without Best, Ferris, Muller and Wannenberg there's no fight, Munster can be stripped of their best players but those replacing them will fight....
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Re: Munster - next headache for the IRFU?

Post by Snipe Watson » Sun Feb 19, 2012 11:44 am

Shan wrote:[We shall go on till the end, we shall fight in Ireland, we shall fight o'er the seas and oceans, we shall fight with growing confidence and growing strength in the scrum, we shall defend our province whatever the cost may be, we shall fight at the breakdown, we shall fight in the lineout, we shall fight on the ground and in the air, we shall fight on the tryline, we shall never surrender.

And I might just have to set up a little fight with you on Easter Sunday if you don't stop being such a langer.

>TH >TH
Put em up Winston :argue:
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