Roscommon manager denies intentionally throwing football at linesman’s head

Roscommon manager Kevin McStay insists he did not intentionally throw a football at the linesman’s head at half-time in their Super 8s defeat to Donegal.

McStay was incensed with the linesman over two incidents just before half-time which did not result in Roscommon frees.

McStay confronted linesman Niall Cullen and after the whistle had been sounded for the break, the Roscommon manager threw a football which hit one of the officials on the back of the head.

Referee Ciarán Branagan ordered McStay to spend the second-half in the dugout. The Roscommon manager said he was “maybe, more aggressive than I should be”.

“We got two dreadful calls, the last two big calls of the first-half,” McStay explains.

“Michael Murphy’s point where he pushed one of our lads out of the way before kicking it over. Fair play to Michael, he’s a big strong man. I have huge admiration for him, but it should have been a free out for barging or leading hand.

"The one before half-time, everyone in the stadium knew that was a free. Ciaran (Branagan) was apparently blindsided. I totally accept that. The linesman wasn’t blindsided. He had a perfect view, for me. I asked him to relay the free. This happens all the time.

"He just blanked me, told me to get out of his space. To be dismissed like that isn’t pleasant. That was the bit that annoyed me the most."

“I was a bit aggressive to him, he felt. I threw a ball. I had no intention of hitting him, it apparently landed on his shoulders, head. When that was made known to me, I came in and apologised. It was accepted, as far as I know. The referee then told me he was going to have to go with his linesman, he says, 'you were overly aggressive and I’m going to have to ask you to sit down for the second half."

McStay is now likely to be sanctioned by Croke Park

“If you want to do something with me, fine. Why don’t they do something with the officials? Why don’t they tidy that up and see how they are performing."

By Eoghan Cormican
Sports Reporter

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