Aidan O'Shea 'zoned out' of selfie storm
12 July 2017
Mayo's Aidan O'Shea signs autographs for supporters.
Aidan O'Shea has been doing his talking on the pitch against Derry and Clare in recent weeks but he has broken his silence on the criticism that came his way from two-time Meath All-Ireland winner Bernard Flynn before a ball was kicked in anger in this year's championship.
Following a challenge game against Meath that was played in Mullingar back in May, Flynn took exception to the fact that the Breaffy powerhouse was signing autographs and taking selfies with children rather than participating in a warm down with his team-mates.
Flynn's observations generated plenty of column inches with O'Shea's former manager James Horan saying the RTE pundit 'made an absolute tit of himself'.
As the man stuck in the middle, what did O'Shea make of the whole thing?
“It's impossible to try and switch off totally,” he said on Newstalk's Off The Ball last night.
“To be honest with you, a lot of the boys were pulling the piss out of it and making a joke out of it or whatever.
“It is what it is. I did my best to switch off from it and to be honest with you, would have stayed away from social media for a prolonged period of time. I got to the stage where I didn't even know what other games were on television from a sport point of view whereas usually I'd be well clued into things.
“I just zoned out and to be honest with you, with my injury, it would take a huge amount of time to try and get back and that was just totally my focus and you can't control things like that.”
He added: “When I became an inter-county footballer, I made a conscious decision to make sure I was obedient, especially to kids.
“It’s an important part of what the GAA is about, what we’re all about as a community. Sometimes that gets lost in the overall thing.
“For me, I’m a Breaffy footballer first of all, and a Mayo footballer second of all.
“Whether it’s a club game in the top end of Mayo, or an inter-county football game, if some kid or somebody wants a picture, I’ll do what I asked when I was ten or 11 years of age.
“And I’ll definitely be obliging where I can. From that point of view, it’s disappointing.”