MONAGHAN CAPTAIN OWEN Lennon believes the Sean Cavanagh incident was “blown out of all proportion.”
Cavanagh’s cynical foul on Conor McManus helped turn the All-Ireland quarter-final in Tyrone’s favour and ultimately ended a dream summer for the Ulster champions.
Although they came out on the losing end, the Farney skipper said he — and any other player in the same position — would have done the exact same thing.
“Every player wants to do whatever it takes to win for their county and that’s what it boils down to. It just happened to be Sean Cavanagh. It was pure cynicism and he done it and that’s it.
“It’s been blown out of all proportion because it goes on every weekend in different matches. Just because it was Sean Cavanagh it’s been blown up.
“Listen, he can get away with it. There’s only a yellow card so why not.”
Owen Lennon with Lenovo “Best of the Best” winner Sean Buggy in Croke Park yesterday (Sportsfile / Brian Lawless)
Lennon was the first Monaghan captain to lift the Ulster title since 1988 but despite bridging a 25-year gap at provincial level, he and his team-mates were hungry to go on and win a historic first All-Ireland.
“We’ve a very mature group of lads. We celebrated on the Monday like any other team would do after winning and Ulster title after such a long time and that was it.
Everyone just got straight back into training on the Wednesday night and we didn’t take our eye off the ball and boys weren’t just happy with the Ulster.
When we look back there are no regrets that we didn’t really go for it.
He added: “I suppose when we look over it over the next couple of weeks, we’ll forget about the Tyrone match and we’ll say it was great to win the Ulster Championship after 25 years. That’s what stands out in my mind.
“Overall we would be happy. We got out of Division 3 and we achieved every goal that we set out this year. That was it. We wanted to gain promotion, we set another goal and said why not try to win the league, and then we took each Championship match as it came.
“Thankfully it has been a great season. That’s the biggest thing.”