Listen to the award winning Second Captains free to air podcasts, presented by Eoin McDevitt, Ciáran Murphy and Ken Early. Subscribe to daily shows at secondcaptains.com/join Join The Second Captains World Service and get access to our daily shows and much more. Become a Second Captains member at secondcaptains.com. - iTunes Podcast of the Year - iTunes Essentials Top 10 Podcasts of All-Time - The Guardian's 50 Podcasts You Need To Hear - Ireland's Most-Downloaded Podcast
Freddie Arsenal DNA Ljungberg's Arsenal were recognisably Arsenal, and that is not necessarily a good sign. Is there a chance that Brendan Rodgers' links with the job could become more than "hypothetical"? Jack Grealish's sensational performance at Old Trafford was a big part of the reason why Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's team still has only four wins from 14 matches. How long can this form go on before the patience runs out? We also discuss Barcelona's new season documentary, just released on ...more
If Jim Gavin had resigned shortly after the five-in-a-row had been achieved, then it would have been seen as surprising, but not shocking. The fact that he has left the most high-profile job in the GAA as the calendar ticks into December means the news, which broke on Saturday morning, qualifies as a bombshell. Oisin McConville and Michael Foley of the Sunday Times talk to us about why it happened now, what he did while he was in the job, and who's going to take over from him. And in t...more
Much like last week on the World Service when Maurico Pocchetino was relieved of his duties at Spurs, the Emery news threw all our careful planning out the window - let’s just put out a podcast on the big news of the day and so that’s what we did. That pod is out now - along with a fun look back on Tiger's last 10 years, a Champions League review and all the week's other big sports stories - you can have listen once you’re signed up on secondcaptains.com
Manchester City kept the chase going with a narrow win over Chelsea that saw Guardiola's team notch up an unwanted first. Are we seeing cracks appear on the glittering City facade? Meanwhile the Ole-outometer was swinging more wildly than a Phil Jones attempted clearance as the Uniteds of Sheffield and Manchester traded the lead and shared the points. United stay ninth in the Premier League - but they're doing a lot better in a certain Other table, where they have some surprising company in t...more
Ireland had 4 wins from 4 in Round 1 of the European Rugby Champions Cup last week, but we had to make do with 2 wins and a draw this week - and the only defeat came from what might have been the best performance of the lot, Connacht away to Toulouse. We talk about Munster's thrilling draw at home to Racing with Gerry Thornley of the Irish Times and one of Racing's returning Munster-men Donnacha Ryan, as well as Leinster's gritty 7 point win in Lyon, and Ulster's victory over a sorry Clermo...more
It has been a dramatic week on the Second Captains World Service, and we thank the football Gods that Ken, Murph, Eoin and Richie were not armed during a particularly heated debrief on Tuesday after Ireland's 1-1 draw with Denmark. With disaster narrowly averted, Ken went to Tallaght to see the Ireland u-21s, and his love of the game was duly restored, before his heart was crushed again by Daniel Levy and Jose Mourinho. Check out what you've been missing on the Second Captains World Ser...more
The Rugby World Cup is barely over but time waits for no man, and it seemed like the Irish players were only too happy to re-focus their attention on a tournament that they actually like playing in, and have even won from time to time. Shane Horgan and Gerry Thornley of the Irish Times guide us through the main talking points of the opening weekend of this season's tournament - with Saracens fielding a second string, Ireland's provinces invincible, and a lot of Irish players generally looki...more
With the Danes in town and maybe ready to teach us another cruel lesson, we take refuge in nostalgia and revisit the week 10 years ago when Ireland went full Alex Jones. We also look to the longer-term future, with Kieran Lucid and Brendan Dillon joining us in studio to bring us up to speed with what's been happening on the question of the all-island league. But we can't hide forever from the present. Tonight it's Ireland v Denmark for a place in the Euros, and hopefully James McClean ca...more
Ken Early gives his thoughts on the rise of the poppy.
Name another podcast that in one week gives you a 2 minute Denmark grudge audiobed, Yanis Varoufakis being told the EU humiliated him and Paddy Holohan telling Richie Sadlier what its really like to step into an MMA cage? ITS THE SECOND CAPTAINS WORLD SERVICE.....YO!
The European Rugby Champions Cup starts this week, with last year's champions Saracens widely tipped to retain their title... or at least they *were* widely tipped, until they were given a 35 point deduction in the English Premiership, and fined £5 million for salary cap infractions. We talk to Shane Horgan and Mike Aylwin of the Guardian about what Saracens' suspension tells us about the sport's business model, why rugby clubs need to rethink their strategy, and why other English clubs hav...more
Ep 1618: Liverpool Simply Stronger, City Get Mugged Off, Title Race Realities, Poppy Heat - 11/11/19 by Second Captains
The Ireland women's hockey team can't stop creating history - from a World Cup final, to record crowds, to The Olympics. We talk to Nicci Daly, one of the stars of a team that keep getting it done in tight games and on big occasions. South Africa were far from perfect and won the Rugby World Cup with a game-plan that lacked ambition and scope, but had the best basics - scrum, lineout, maul, defence - of any team that's ever played the game. Were England and NZ too idealistic? Are defence coac...more
Saturday saw probably the most heartbreaking come-from-behind win of Pep Guardiola's career, as City returned to their dressing room only to hear that Liverpool had scored a late winner of their own - but were the City manager's supposed comments about Mané's diving misreported? Mané didn't really dive, of course, as VAR should have decided - and no, we can't avoid talking about VAR forever - it's clear now almost everyone has now turned against it, we discuss what's going wrong and why. ...more
From F2 freestylers, to Xhaka haters, to free love, to Irishmen loving England - its been another big week on the Second Captains World Service, and as its the start of the month, its the perfect time to secondcaptains.com/join
Arsenal v Crystal Palace didn't look a likely game of the weekend beforehand, but at the bloodthirsty cauldron the Emirates has become, anyone can end up being fed to the lions. We also discuss Liverpool's victory over Spurs and what the future might hold for Trent Alexander-Arnold and Harry Kane. Then we're joined in studio by the F2 Freestylers, Jez Lynch and Billy Wingrove, who talk to us about how young players learn skills these days, and how the culture of football is changing - almo...more
Why always us? It’s been another horrendous Rugby World Cup campaign for Ireland, and we are left with the same old questions. Eoin Reddan and Shane Horgan are both on the show today to try and make sense of our 46-14 mauling at the hands of New Zealand on Saturday. There’s a fair bit of blame to go around, and we apportion it as judiciously as possible. Eoin tries to rank and rate our World Cup humiliations (where does 2019 come in?), there’s tenured rugby players, and Eddie Jones’ fin...more
We've been trying not to talk about VAR too much but the Premier League isn't making it easy. With video referees apparently reluctant to intervene, is it time for the referees to be forced to take the opportunity to overrule themselves? We also discuss a new study that suggests that while football may be a game you play with your brain, it appears not to be very good for your brain. John Brewin and Mark Critchley join us to analyse yesterday's draw at Old Trafford. Was this a turning po...more
Its been another wet n wild week on the good ship Second Captains. But amidst all the on- and off-field drama of our national teams competing on two fronts, one constant remains. When we send Ken Early out on assignment, something daft **will** happen. And so it was this week that he walked at a brisk speed into a plate-glass door in a McDonalds in Geneva, and this incident makes up but a fraction of this week's preview of current attractions on the Second Captains World Service. The...more
Ireland beat Samoa on Saturday morning, but that never looked likely to be enough to get us top spot in the pool, and so it's New Zealand in a World Cup quarter-final next Saturday morning. Are there ANY grounds for optimism? Eoin outlines a few, and Gerry Thornley feels there's still enough quality in this Irish team to pull off a major surprise. New Zealand television superstar and friend of the show Scotty Stevenson gives us his impressions of an extraordinary night in Yokohama last nigh...more
Ireland and Georgia played out the dullest of 0-0 draws on Saturday, but we must ask an unpalatable question - was it any worse than any of our other performances this year, with the only difference being this time we didn't score? Any lingering concerns that Aaron Connolly might be 'over-awed' by international football lasted about 2 minutes, as he created more in 12 minutes than his 10 team-mates could muster up in the preceding 78. Former Irish international Damien Delaney is genuinely e...more
A Light Zephyr Of Second Captains World Service by Second Captains
Last night we helped to launch Richie Sadlier's new book, Recovering, at the Chocolate Factory on King's Inns Street. In this interview, Richie explains how he decided to write the book, discusses some of the personal revelations in the story, and tells us how he feels now it's all out there.
Ireland have been undone at rugby world cups in many different ways over the years - from Michael Lynagh, to 15-man lineouts, to Juan Imhoff... but we've never been knocked out by a freak weather event before - UNTIL NOW. It turns out there are alternative arrangements in place if indeed a typhoon does roll into town on Saturday and makes our final match against Samoa unplayable... but it's a World Cup, which means we're a little jumpier than usual. Gerry Thornley of the Irish Times joins u...more
Irish football has been free of John Delaney for just over a week now - and already a great green wave of Gaelic genius threatens to engulf the Premier League. Is it fair that Mauricio Pochettino's position at Tottenham should be questioned simply because his team were blown away by the most talented human being ever to emerge from the city of Galway? After we have surveyed the happiness and unhappiness of various Premier League families, Miguel Delaney and Simon Hughes join us to analyse ...more
It's the start of the month, which means it's high time you joined the Second Captains World Service - but if just asking you isn't persuasive enough, here are some highlights from this week so far. The Players Chair was back this week, with a rollicking good chat with Ireland and Wolves defender Matt Doherty. Richie talks to him about Martin O'Neill, Richard Keogh, 'personal' injuries and how likely or otherwise he is to start in Georgia next week. You'll also hear Shane Horgan's rat...more
Ireland are still in the Rugby World Cup but... our 19-12 loss to Japan now means we must talk about the bad old days again. We recorded a live podcast moments after the final whistle in our home-away-from-home, the Liberty Hall Theatre in Dublin, with Andrew Trimble and Eoin Reddan, and some uncomfortable home truths were brought to us. We are now an inconsistent team, and we have no real understanding of how well or badly we're going to play from week to week. That still means we cou...more
It's all over between John Delaney and the FAI. We reminisce about the bad times, and the crazy times. Leicester's 5-0 demolition job on Newcastle posed a couple of questions. Is Jamie Vardy the most underrated player of his generation? And how has Coach Rodgers gone so quickly from being a bright young manager learning his trade, to a grandee of the game? We also talk about Manchester City's victory at Everton, which featured a stellar performance from Riyad Mahrez, and more slightly conf...more
Ireland outmuscled Scotland, but that aside, what else did we do right, and what else did we learn? Will Jordan Larmour hold onto the 15 jersey? Is Stockdale now a master defender? Have we the forwards to beat South Africa? We chat to Shane Horgan about vintage Ireland, pathetic Scotland, crafty Kiwis and a thrilling opening weekend. Shane says there’s plenty for Ireland to be encouraged by in the Boks opening display, but can we survive a 20 minute physical onslaught the way NZ did? We c...more
Liverpool made it six wins in a row but finished the match clinging on as Chelsea, inspired by their fans' generosity of spirit, threw everything at them in search of an equaliser. Manchester City won 8-0 and then the hero of the day, Bernardo Silva, soured the moment by blundering into a social media racism controversy. Gabriele Marcotti joins us to discuss why the mood at Stamford Bridge remains buoyant in the face of poor results, the absence of Pulisic from Lampard's teamsheets, and to gi...more
The Champions League is underway, the RWC 2019 is underway and grunge week is over - its the perfect time to join the Second Captains World Service secondcaptains.com/join . Shane Horgan told us this week that he reckons England are going to win the whole thing, and along with Donnacha Ryan, Eoin Reddan, Gerry Thornley and Mattie Williams, you'll get all the biggest rugby brains giving you the best insight and analysis. Earlier this week, Jonny Cooper told us about the words of consolation...more
'No-one likes us, we don't care' would appear to be the attitude of some Dublin fans... but is there a silent majority of the country who, while they'd rather see the cups getting shared around a bit, are nonetheless more than willing to give credit where it's due? Oisin McConville and Mike Quirke give us their thoughts on the greatest team of all time, the players and manager that made them, and the fault-lines that could yet appear on the horizon. Not even 24 hours after the Dubs won...more
Eoin returns from Seattle, and he's bearing gifts, which translates to both good news and bad news for Second Captains listeners. There is no doubt what the theme is today as the dazzling young stars of Frank Lampard's talent factory blazed far too hot for Wolves to handle. Sam Lee and Jonathan Wilson join us for a closer look at some of the weekend's football. Is there a solution for City's defensive problems in their youth teams? And why does Jonathan believe a reckoning is coming for F...more
The Second Captains World Service aches for you. Here is a taste of what you've been missing. Oisin and Mike on Brolly's Licence To Ill, Richie Sadlier on Troy Parrott's rise, Ken on Dubs all Ireland ceremony, and RWC 2019 build up.
Two weeks ago, Ireland conceded almost 60 points to England... so what the hell are we doing at number 1 in the world rankings? No-one seems to be paying it much heed, least of all here in Ireland, but it suggests we must be doing something right. Eoin Reddan and Gerry Thornley of the Irish Times pick out the best bits from a second win over Wales in 7 days in the Aviva on Saturday, and why after the Twickenham humiliation, the only way was up. James Ryan has emerged from Devin Toner's...more
If Ireland are Homer Simpson, then Georgia are Homer's assistant and guardian angel Karl, who helps him get promoted to executive in the Dimoxinil episode. Once again they have sabotaged Ireland's opponents and simplified the task of Euro qualification. Tomorrow Ireland play Bulgaria in a friendly that allows Mick McCarthy to look at some of his bench options. We talk about this morning's press conference, and catch up on what else was happening around Europe on international week. Mi...more
There simply is no better time to join the Second Captains world service than the first week of the month, with new editions of both Richie Sadlier's Player's Chair and Ken Early's Politics Podcast, and an Ireland V Switzerland review coming on Friday. Richie was speaking to Paul O'Connell at Electric Picnic last Saturday, and Ken spoke to Richard Seymour, author of a new book called The Twittering Machine. For those of you who haven't succumbed just yet... here's a taster.
Dublin set off yesterday in pursuit of history, trying to become the first team to win the five-in-a-row. They eventually came within one kick of it yesterday evening, before Dean Rock's sideline free-kick dropped short and wide, and condemned us to a replay of yesterday's thrilling All-Ireland football final. Oisin McConville and Mike Quirke were there, loved it as much as we did, and tell us why there's room for improvement everywhere, even amidst all the drama. Mike Quirke's bullish pr...more
Mane and Salah provided the drama but as far as the title race is concerned, the most significant moment of the Premier League weekend happened elsewhere. Miguel Delaney was at the Emirates to see Arsenal come back to draw with Spurs. Is Unai Emery getting closer to his best first XI, and what bug fixes would Miguel recommend for the latest edition of the MP operating system? Then we’re joined by David Sneyd who saw Seamus Coleman lead Everton to a 3-2 win against Wolves. We also have ...more
2017 Footballer of the Year Andy Moran has announced his retirement from inter-county football. In a wide-ranging interview for ‘The Players Chair’ with Richie Sadlier on the Second Captains World Service, the man with more appearances for Mayo than any other player has said that having discussed it with James Horan this weekend, he’s made his decision to retire, and has told his team-mates that he will not return for another season. Moran won a National League title earlier this year, May...more
Ireland suffered a record defeat to England on Saturday, and the rather uneasy rumblings of last week have become fully-realised fears in the eyes of many Irish rugby fans - we press the panic button on today's show. Shane Horgan sees our hopes of winning the World Cup disappearing over the horizon, and he's on with Gerry Thornley to pinpoint the many, many areas for improvement from a shockingly poor Ireland display in Twickenham. Ken questions the very reason for the existence of the...more
The Premier League weekend: David Silva sublime. David Luiz ridiculous. Eoin has some questions - cheap, nasty, and obvious ones. Did Unai Emery play it too conservatively at Anfield? Who was to blame for Crystal Palace's first goal against Manchester United? And are managers seriously going to keep complaining about penalties not given even in the VAR age? We're joined by Mark Douglas to talk about Newcastle's surprise win at Tottenham. Who are the people Steve Bruce claims to have shut ...more
It's been a bit of a roller-coaster year for Tipperary - an All-Ireland win looked pretty unlikely at the end of the league, looked very likely indeed after the Munster championship round-robin, and then after a 12 point hammering from Limerick in the Munster final, it looked a rather remote possibility again. But from the ashes of that chastening day, they came good when it mattered - and in a game that will be remembered for Richie Hogan's red card, they were crowned All-Ireland champions...more
It's Monday, so it's time to talk about VAR. Ken defends himself against the "gammon" accusations and explains why his critics are wrong. In between there is some time to discuss the details of how Man City took Spurs apart. We also talk about Frank Lampard's downbeat and strangely detailed assessment of Chelsea's draw at home to Leicester, and generally incorporate a range of up to date movie references. David Sneyd was at Bramall Lane to see the "Brexit" Blades - featuring half an Irish ...more
Q: What do Derek McGrath, Ric Flair, the Mighty Magyars and Eoin tanking a Peter O'Mahony interview have in common? A: THIS WEEK ON THE SECOND CAPTAINS WORLD SERVICE
On a balmy September night in September 2011, Eoin stood outside Mulligan’s on Poolbeg Street basking in the celebrations of Dublin’s first All-Ireland title in 16 years. More than that, he was basking in the love being shown by supporters from other counties who seemed genuinely happy for the Dubs to have their day in the sun. Fast-forward to 2019 and with Dublin on the brink of 5-in-a-row, it’s fair to say that the neighbourly spirit on show that night has long since disappeared. Many neutr...more
Manchester United destroyed Chelsea at Old Trafford, with Daniel James' emotional celebrations reminding the crowd why they love football in the first place. It meant Frank Lampard started with the worst result of any Chelsea manager in the Premier League era, and there have been quite a few Chelsea managers. Is the selection of young players just a political ploy, as Jose Mourinho seems to think? Or does Lampard really believe Mount and Abraham can be the backbone of his new look Chelsea? ...more
Whether or not the Community Shield counts as a trophy, it's become plain that there are no friendlies any more when Manchester City play Liverpool. We talk about how the teams seem to be shaping up, the relevance of the old wisdom that you should buy when you're strong, and touch on a few other issues in the soon-to-shut transfer window. Miguel Delaney joins us to talk about the importance of yesterday's game, and why Manchester United's move for Paulo Dybala fell through.
It's August 1st, which means this is the PERFECT time to sign up to the Second Captains World Service!! Sign up today, and you get maximum bang for your (5) buck(s), and to pique your interest, have a quick listen to this - as Murph gets humiliated by Oisin McConville, Stephen A Smith outlines how Eoin could get even more militant with those of you hesitating before signing up to us, and a clip from Ken's latest politics podcast, premiering tomorrow.
Robbie Keane is not in the mood to reminisce. Funny? Funny how? Arsenal have found some spare cash, or at least some sellers willing to discuss terms. We also talk about why Gareth Bale is not going to China, and whether Real Madrid's technical committee has ever seen Paul Pogba play. Also today, Gavin Cooney of the42 joins us to talk about what happened over the weekend at the FAI AGM - where Donal Conway appeared to outmanoeuvre Shane Ross.
There really isn't enough time between All-Ireland hurling semi-finals to digest the full magnitude of what went on this weekend, but we'll give it a shot today, as we try and sort out just how we're left with a fifth Tipperary/Kilkenny final in the last 10 years. Michael Duignan and former Kilkenny legend Brian Hogan are magnanimous as Eoin admits that - yes, hurling folk DO bang on a bit about it but... bloody hell, what a sport. We talk about the myth of Cody, Liam Sheedy's magnificent j...more
The Open came to Ireland for the first time in 68 years, and the Claret Jug will stay in Ireland, after Shane Lowry's extraordinary 6-shot win over the field at Royal Portrush yesterday. We salute a man we can all say is as nice as he appears on TV, with Malachy Clerkin and Lawrence Donegan. We also lament the fact that just 24 hours after his success, Shane has already been usurped... by his own granny's scene-stealing cameo on RTE News. Mike Quirke and Oisin McConville outline just w...more
It's been another turbulent weekend for the FAI - but on the field maybe there are some signs that Irish football's fortunes are looking up. Meanwhile Premier League clubs have been touring some humid and not-so-humid locations, aiming to boost fitness levels and bank balances, with varying degrees of success. Sid Lowe joins us to talk about the increasingly hostile stand-off between Real Madrid and Gareth Bale.
It was a stunning weekend of sport, which had all the hallmarks of summer - Wimbledon finals in baking heat, GAA in front of massive crowds, with an added soupçon of Cricket World Cup final madness. At the end of it all we have Novak Djokovic as Wimbledon men's champion - but why is he so unpopular? Caitlin Thompson of Racquet magazine answers that question in pretty emphatic style. We have Oisin McConville and Mike Quirke on hand to tell us the main headlines of a huge weekend of Gael...more
It was a sunny Sunday when for once football was pushed into the shadows - but nobody keeps this baby in the corner for long. La Liga clubs have been the most active in the summer transfer market so far. Has there been an outbreak of caution in the Premier League or is everyone just waiting until the last minute to lose their minds? We discuss Manchester United's reported interest in Harry Maguire. Is £80 million for England's World Cup hero solid business, or one of the most insane exam...more
A spritz of the Second Captains World Service
After missing out last year, Mayo are in the Super 8s, and they seem destined to keep us entertained for another month or so... at least. Mike Quirke and Malachy Clerkin of the Irish Times give us their thoughts on the weekend's football, with Mayo surging past Galway, and wins for Cork, Meath and Tyrone. There's one team the lads fancy to take a few heavy beatings... and it's not the Division 3 team. And there's the unbelievably tasty prospect of Mayo against Kerry in Killarney next ...more
Richie Sadlier joins us in studio to discuss covering the FIFA WWC for RTE, Team America, male and female celebrations, and Phil "the humble one". We talk to Johnette Howard about how the team is perceived in the US, confusing brashness with confidence, Rapinoe's wars with Trump and where the fight for equal pay will go from here. Tim Vickery chats to us about Brazil winning the Copa in Brazil, Jesus' moment of madness, and how Argentinian fans' calls for Leo Messi to become more vocal and...more
Jonathan Pearce went full Jonathan Pearce, England went full England and Dr Ken diagnoses glazed eyes. Plus Murph on the GAA's Mr fix it, and Frances Murphy's birthday greeting. Welcome to another taste of the Second Captains World Service.
A spying scandal has erupted ahead of the World Cup semi-final between England and the USA and Phil Neville has another national team set-up to criticise. We look back at the quarter-finals and forward to tomorrow's much-anticipated Anglo-American showdown in Lyon. Also today, we go through Swiss Ramble's snapshot of Arsenal's lost decade. We're joined from Lyon by Caitlin Murray, author of "The National Team", a history of the USWNT, to talk about the Americans' march toward the final ...more
The first part of the hurling summer has ended, and it's ended with Wexford and Limerick on top in Leinster and Munster. If that sounds like it has a real mid-90s vibe to it, then you'd be right. Hurling Uber-mensch and the soul of Wexford, Liam Griffin, tells us why winning on the double, in minor and in senior, was so important for Wexford, and why it's a reward for hard work, planning, an exceptional playing group, and for Davy Fitz's application. Two-time all-star Seamus Hickey was...more
Ep 1501: Donegal Dominant, Dublin Dismissive, Kerry Unconvincing, The Dublin Q - 24/06/2019 by Second Captains
Ep 1500: Pip Lets Rip, Ref Quits, LVG On Messi - 24/06/19 by Second Captains
We didn't think we'd spend at least part of this week discovering factoids about the many and various ways that Scotland have managed not to qualify from World Cup groups, but after the misadventures of their women's team against Argentina last night, that is exactly what we've been doing on the Second Captains World Service. We present the results of those findings here on this SC taster menu, along with Eoin's wife pranking him, Oisin McConville backing Donegal for Sam (in a manner of spea...more
The Munster hurling championship last year had plenty of fire-works, but it didn't have drama to match the last few minutes of the Leinster hurling championship round-robin series on Saturday, as first Galway, then Dublin, then Wexford, then Kilkenny all found themselves staring elimination from the All-Ireland championship in the face. When the music stopped, it was 2017 champions, and All-Ireland finalists in 2018, Galway who were left in fourth place, and staring at a long summer. Michae...more
Nine of the 16 second round teams at the Womens' World Cup have been confirmed, and the Americans still look like the team to stop, after following up their demolition job on Thailand with a 3-0 defeat of Chile. Meanwhile Paul Pogba has announced that he feels like a new challenge, somewhere else. But where? Who can afford him? And what direction do United take after he leaves? Rebecca Myers of the Sunday Times joins us from Nice to talk about the USWNT - a "super-elite" sporting instituti...more
Welcome to our weekly sprinkling of the Second Captains World Service.
It's been a dark time for the Gaelic football fans out there, as their game has been ignored in favour of the small ball, on television at least. So there's no better antidote for that than a reunion of the Second Captains punditry dream-team of Mike Quirke and Oisin McConville on today's show. It will be a Cavan/Donegal Ulster final, after their stunning wins at the weekend - just what exactly has happened to make the Ulster championship the greatest show on turf this summer? And with the ...more
The Women's World Cup is underway in France, but the best player in the world is nowhere to be seen. We discuss the case of Ada Hegerberg and the Norwegian Saipan. Meanwhile Ireland are top of the Euro 2020 qualifying group after an encouraging performance in the 1-1 draw in Copenhagen. The Nations League final was a fascinating duel - we talk about Matthijs de Ligt, why he's so highly rated and why he hasn't yet decided on a destination. Damien Delaney gives his view on Ireland's perf...more
WELCOME TO HELL, or as its better known, Copenhagen.
Ep 1483: Liverpool Win The Champions League - 03/06/2019 by Second Captains
Champions League Final Fun, chilled Klopp, Ken On Tour and Rice to Man United all feature on our latest snifter of the Second Captains World Service. Disfrutas!
Leinster were able to bounce back from defeat in the European Champions Cup final to secure a third trophy in the last 2 years with a 18-15 defeat of Glasgow. Eoin Reddan and Gerry Thornley run the rule over the Pro 14 final - a game where that defeat to Saracens, and the opening game of the Rugby World Cup against Scotland, both cast a shadow. While Leinster were winning in Glasgow, Roscommon were doing what Roscommon do best - wrecking the best laid plans of Mayo with a stunning one-po...more
The president of La Liga, Javier Tebas, has attacked Manchester City and PSG for inflating the European football market, prompting a spicy response from Khaldoon al Mubarak. The City chairman's smooth delivery has charmed McDevitt - but do his arguments stand up? We also discuss whether Matthijs de Ligt would be throwing his career away by joining Manchester United. Finally Terry Daley joins us on the line to talk about the Chelsea culture war: Maurizio Sarri's first season seems respecta...more
Munster have now lost 8 semi-finals, and 2 finals since they last won a trophy. Many people saw last Saturday's Pro14 semi-final against Leinster in the RDS as a must-win game, but what they were left with was more questions, departing coaches and a thoroughly bewildered-looking head coach and captain. Former Munster player James Coughlan and Gerry Thornley try and assess their next move as they look to progress, while Leinster have another final to look forward to, this one against Glasgow...more
"What is life, what is the reason why we live? It is to live these kind of emotions..." So Pep Guardiola told the BBC in his pre-FA Cup Final interview. By this standard Saturday was another great day for the City manager, as he got to live almost the full range of emotions - from exultation as his players gave another fantastic performance, to fury as a reporter took the opportunity to ask him about money matters. Why do City feel as though they're not getting the credit they deserve? Wha...more
Who "barely fogs a mirror", and who "is as bould as a pig"? These, and other important issues are discussed on today's mini-promo-pod for non-members of the Second Captains World Service. The two men responsible for those illuminating, evocative phrases are US Murph and Michael Duignan, and you can decide for yourself who said what about whom. This week we cover Bielsa and Lamps, Tiger back to back, hurling's comedy show and Man City's many troubles off the field. There's also Ken ...more
Afterwards, it seemed inevitable that Saracens' power-game would eventually wear down Leinster in Saturday's European Champions Cup final. But - was it really all that inevitable? Or were key mistakes at key times the reason why Leinster couldn't add a fifth European title? Shane Horgan and Donnacha Ryan, a losing finalist last year with Racing 92, join us to discuss the turning-points, the decisions and the individual performances that turned this game in the London club's favour. Eo...more
When City won the league in 2012, Carlos Tevez caused consternation by waving a banner saying "RIP Fergie" at the title party. This time the top two have expressed nothing but mutual respect, gratitude and admiration. It's all very decent and civilised, and everybody can congratulate themselves on their new found maturity. But with Guardiola promising City will return even stronger, where now for the chasing pack? Can Liverpool possibly sustain their form into next season? Must Jurgen Klopp ...more
A snifter of Spurs lunacy, Richie Sadlier after his trip to Anfield and Ken on Ajax's trench foot
On this week's message to those of you wavering on the sidelines anxious but still unsure as to whether €5 can be spared for a subscription - we have a soupçon of our coverage of last night's Liverpool 4-0 Barcelona 'ridiculo', a sprig of Murphy misfortune, and a hefty dose of Ken Early. It was a ridiculous night last night, and you won't hear better analysis of the fall-out anywhere else, so why not sign up today at second captains.com/join and be a part of the magic.
Everything is settled except the destination of the title. For Manchester City to drop points once already to Leicester City this season might have been bad luck. But twice would look like carelessness. Liverpool are already counting the cost of their progressive stance on concussion with the news that Mohamed Salah has been ruled out of Tuesday night's semi-final against Barcelona after the head injury he suffered at Newcastle. It has been another tough weekend of headlines for the FAI, wh...more
It's been another history-making week on the Second Captains World Service, as we call one of our most beloved guests 'a twat' live on-air. Come have a listen at some of the other non-insulting stuff we've been talking about this week by joining us on www.secondcaptains.com for just €5 a month - stuff like Ryan McHugh, Donegal footballer, on being the scion of a great footballing family, concussion, and winning All-Irelands with Donegal. Plus there's Damien Delaney on Lionel Messi... a...more
Ep 1455: Marathon Mo Farah/Haile Gebrselassie Beef, Conor Murray Injury Update - 29/04/2019 by Second Captains
Marcelo Bielsa ordered his Leeds team to concede an equaliser against Aston Villa for reasons of sportsmanship, but at least two people aren't impressed by his act of integrity: Sheffield United boss Chris Wilder, and our own Eoin McDevitt. The title race inched remorselessly towards what looks an inevitable conclusion with City's victory at Burnley, but Leicester's form means Liverpool still have hope. We discuss the high-stakes comedy of the top-four mini-league, with Arsenal and Spurs ...more
In this week's sampling of World Service fare, Ken outlines the cure for dissociation from reality as caused by our obsession with technology: League of Ireland football. We looked back at the trauma inflicted upon the nation during last year's u17 European Championship quarter-finals with Ireland manager Colin O'Brien. And there's also Countdown, a la Second Captains.
After the hysterical overreaction to Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's initial success, we're surfing a wave of hysterical counter-reaction to Manchester United's dismal recent form. After six defeats in their last eight, United face City on Wednesday, at risk of recording their worst run of form since 1981. We discuss another weekend in this unprecedented title race, in which Liverpool after 35 matches have already broken their club record for Premier League points in the season, and yet are stil...more
It's time for us to once again give you a little taster of what you could have been listening to this week, had you taken the plunge and become a Second Captains World Service member. Leinster and Ireland legend Shane Horgan was in rare form looking ahead to this weekend's European Champions Cup semi-finals, as well as looking back 10 years, to the day when Leinster were nearly cheated out of their first Heineken Cup by the Harlequins 'bloodgate' controversy. And there's also Ken's pol...more
Tiger Woods has won a few major titles in his time. 22 years ago he won his first Masters title by 12 shots. He won the US Open in 2000 by 15 shots. He won the British Open the same year by 8 shots. But has there ever been anything like the 1-stroke victory he held over the field yesterday afternoon? Malachy Clerkin and Lawrence Donegan join us to talk about the magnitude of Tiger's comeback, the drama of his victory, and the lamentations of his vanquished foes. Is there now a chance a...more
With John Delaney's departure from the FAI expected - but at time of recording not yet confirmed - we discuss the latest developments at Abbottstown and how Irish football ended up in this mess. It was another sensational weekend in what already looks like the highest standard of title race ever in the Premier League - with Salah returning to his best, Hendo forcing chunk after chunk of humble pie down Ken's throat, and Kevin de Bruyne compensating for the relative lack of drama in City's win...more
Ken's mood got darker as the week went on, and it started with his philosophy on dreaming big. John Delaney said nothing, which said everything about how Ireland works. And in the Champions League we ask is Ole careering off course? Its our weekly taster of the Second Captains World Service...
It has been a banner few weeks for FAI statements, with each one more dramatic than the last. Today's edition featured confirmation that John Delaney would indeed appear at the Oireachtas committee hearing on Wednesday, and a tantalising suggestion that the FAI board were not quite as up to speed on matters relating to the €100,000 bridging loan as had been previously suggested. John Heslin has been a part of Westmeath football for a while now, so he knows better than most of the crazy yo-yo...more
Watford are in the Cup final and Troy Deeney has some learnings he'd like to share. It was another weekend when again City gently outwitted their opponents like a superintelligent AI. The impression of City's challenge is cool blue and serene, like a picture of our planet from space. Liverpool's challenge is summed up in the pictures of the celebrating Jordan Henderson, a man-sized aneurysm about to explode. We're joined by Jack Pitt-Brooke to look ahead to Spurs v City in tomorrow night'...more
A lock of Second Captains World Service hair (probably Ken's)...
It was an utterly brilliant weekend of rugby, with huge wins for Leinster and Munster, and a host of heroes and villains. If Jacob Stockdale had touched the ball down when already over the try-line, or if Tadhg Beirne hadn't ensured he got the ref's attention to an off-the-ball incident, both Ulster and Edinburgh might have semi-finals to look forward to. We ask Shane Horgan if he's ever hammed it up... and if he's ever dropped the ball over the try-line. Plus there's Ross Byrne's plato...more
Liverpool's late win over Spurs at Anfield didn't show either side at their very best - but it sure as hell gave everybody a lot to talk about. Why do we always praise and criticise players and performances based on how they end? When is the right time to pass in front of goal? Who should be the Player of the Year? Jonathan Wilson joins us to explain the difference between bottling and choking and which of Liverpool and Manchester City are more likely to fall victim to either phenomenon in t...more
Richie Sadlier on Mick's joyful football and fan free will, Ken on Ole (the only choice, James McClean's scary Irish Identity Test, Irish woman in AFLW Grand Final and Champions Cup QF AHOY!
Ep 1426: Tennis Protests, Hurling Semis, Mayo's Strange Campaign, Ken In OT - 25/03/2019 by Second Captains
In the history of totally daft weeks in Irish football, this one would have to rank pretty high - and we still have plenty of drama to come on and off the field. As John Delaney retires from his role as Chief Executive of the FAI, for a newly-created role as Executive Vice-President, we ponder what this all means for the balance of power in the association. Is this tantamount to a demotion for Delaney, or will he continue to be the main power-broker? We speak to Mark Tighe of the Sun...more
A taste of the Second Captains world service this week
Ireland have had a miserable spring, and the scale of the 25-7 defeat to Wales on Saturday could hardly be over-stated. Why do the players lack composure? What has happened their skillset? Why are they so poor at comebacks? Is it time for a major overhaul of the game-plan? Gerry Thornley of the Irish Times and Mattie Williams try (12.50 mins) and take stock of where we are after two really depressing defeats at either end of the tournament. Is Joe Schmidt burnt out? Does he need help fr...more
A taste of whats on the Second Captains world service this week...
Ireland seemed to learn something about themselves in the games against Italy, Scotland and England - and that regained momentum led them to a comfortable bonus point win over France. Eoin Reddan joins Gerry Thornley to figure out what changed in the intervening weeks, what tactical issues were resolved, and what role high 5's and bro hugs played in the turnaround. Aoife Lane, founder and former chairperson of the WGPA wrote a brilliant column in the Irish Examiner about why ladies foo...more
So looking back, Sergio, what have you learned from your experiences with Real Madrid? Well, that's a tricky question, Terry. But as I always say, we skipped the light fandango, turned cartwheels cross the floor... Sergio Ramos' Twitter self-interview provides some light relief after a more-than-averagely violent and chaotic weekend of football. It's a problem football hasn't spent much time thinking about lately: how can fans be dissuaded from invading the pitch and attacking the players...more
When Ciara Mageean sat down to record an episode of The Players Chair with Richie Sadlier last year, she was coping with changing coach, living in England, and trying to put disappointment behind her. We're delighted to catch up with her today to talk about her bronze in the European Indoor Championships in Glasgow last night. Tommy Walsh is experiencing a third coming in the Kerry football team - 11 years after bursting onto the scene as a teenager, and 4 years after failing to make any im...more
Ken is back from Australia and Eoin is back from Premier Sports to talk about the weekend's football. Jurgen Klopp's tetchy responses after Liverpool's draw at Everton suggest that some of those questions about whether they took enough risk in the game were a bit too close to the bone. Meanwhile City shrugged off more Football Leaks revelations to cruise past Bournemouth and retake the lead. How does this weekend affect the balance of the title race psychodrama? And why would neutrals rat...more
Just what is going on with Ireland? It might seem a strange question to ask after a weekend that saw England beaten, Ireland win their second game in a row, and secure their first bonus point of the tournament - but that's where we are. Shane Horgan is starting to get a little worried, and he's on the line to share his concerns. Ireland might just be trying too hard to force the issue. But when the brilliance of the New Zealand performance is still so fresh in the memory, it's hard not to...more
The moment when Chelsea goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga refused to come off at the end of yesterday's Carabao Cup final might have been sadly indicative of the insanity of Chelsea's dressing-room, but Eoin McDevitt believes it might have more widespread implications for the game as a whole - was yesterday the day the lunatics took over the asylum? Miguel Delaney found himself in the heart of the action yesterday as he interviewed and interpreted for the young Spanish goalkeeper after the game,...more
New slots including McTepid, Irish Scapegoats Of Days Gone By and Nesbitt's Lonely planet emerged this week but that hasn't helped Eoin's ego after once again he was made to look a fool by one of our rugby pundits. We had loads of Champions league analysis, Damien Delaney on managers losing the dressingroom, previews for Man Utd v Liverpool, 6N talk, and Pep gets the "where did you get it all SO wrong" treatment.
Limerick ended 2018 as All-Ireland champions for the first time in 45 years, and they've started 2019 in menacing fashion - beating Wexford away before hammering Tipperary and Kilkenny in successive games. Malachy Clerkin of the Irish Times, and former Limerick captain Donal O'Grady are on the show trying to figure out if Limerick are going all-out for league glory, or if it's a case of them water-skiing on the good vibes of last August. And we discuss Jackie Tyrrell's assertion that they'...more
It's shaping up to be a big week for Jurgen Klopp, as his Liverpool team meet the challenge of Bayern Munich, a team Klopp has had reason to be at logger heads with over the years. Simon Hughes of the Independent joins us to talk about why Klopp so angered Bayern during his time with Dortmund, his relationship with Uli Hoeness, the loss of Virgil, and why a draw might not be such a bad result tomorrow night for Liverpool. We also talk to James Montague, author of the brilliant "The Bil...more
Expect the worst says Eoin, after having his Irish heart crushed by England's Declan Rice. Ken explains this whole sorry saga via a Valentine's message. Pat Kenny has some good clean fun for you all. And we have a teaser for Richie Sadlier's latest Player's Chair interview with Ireland's most decorated and most capped player of all time, the legendary Emma Byrne.
Eoin questioned the wisdom of Maurizio Sarri berating his players in public a couple of weeks back - today he informs us that in their last 3 away games since he said those words, they've conceded 1.2% of their entire premier league goals against. Dion Fanning and Jonathan Wilson are on hand to discuss just how doomed Sarri is, and whether the only thing saving him is Roman Abramovich's new-found disinterest in the Chelsea project. They also discuss whether the clamour for Ole Gunnar S...more
Ireland picked up their first win of the 2019 Six Nations on Saturday, but it was pretty hard sledding for most of Saturday. Shane Horgan and Gerry Thornley are on hand to adjudicate on where we stand after two games. England's points bonanza against the woeful French means the title might be beyond us already, but does that give us free rein to experiment with the World Cup in mind? What are we learning from our hesitancy and nervousness in recent weeks? And is there any other option fo...more
Essence of Second Captains World Service - Noah McDevitt is only three weeks old but he needs a win this weekend. Eoin explains.
Ireland had an extraordinary 2018, but in their first game of the 2019 6 Nations, their back-to-back Grand Slam dream came crashing down around them. They were out-fought out-thought, and out-kicked by a brilliant England team. Is it time to press the panic button? No, says Eoin Reddan - and there's a chance we learn quite a bit from this humbling experience. Gerry Thornley of the Irish Times, Simon and Murph all try and make sense of it. Plus there's proud Preston, unreasonable exp...more
Manchester City kept the pressure on Liverpool by beating Arsenal while Manchester United continued their resurgence under The Sunshine Man. Rory Smith was at the Etihad to see Manchester City defeat Arsenal. Is Guardiola overthinking it? What happens when managers want to prove points rather than win them? And why do teams seem to find it so difficult to enjoy the process of winning a title? Andy Hunter joins us to talk about where things have gone so horribly wrong for City's next oppon...more
Have a whiff of the Second Captains musk - from Donnacha Ryan to Mike Tindall to US Murph on the Super Bowl, to Premier League fright nights.... its been a hell of a week. Join the world service for daily shows, Richie Sadlier's Player's Chair, top class interviews and to observe Ken's continuing loyalty to David Luiz - at secondcaptains.com
It was a rough start to the GAA season on Saturday night, when it briefly looked as if Castlebar's MacHale Park might be blown away for the opening match of the Allianz National Football League. A hurricane of a different sort ripped through Clones on Sunday however, as Monaghan turned a 6-point deficit into a 3-point win against the reigning league and championship winners Dublin. Their captain Colin Walshe joins us on the line to talk must-win moments, super subs and offensive marks....more
It was another FA Cup weekend, so today's football show is mainly about Luke Kelly. David Sneyd wrote about Kelly's links to Irish football in yesterday's Mail on Sunday and he joins us to discuss it further in studio today. We also talk about the former Ireland coaching dream team reuniting at Nottingham Forest. It was a particularly big weekend for journalism, with Hugh McIlvanney's death reminding us of an old world that is vanishing, and Jesse Lingard's triumphant few days showing us ...more
January is a long, cold month, and sometimes the only thing for it is to wrap up warm, hunker down by the fireside, and download a podcast or two. Ken and Murph talk you through what you missed on this week's Second Captains World Service - as we hear why Kerry are no longer contenders for the All-Ireland football championship, 40 is NOT elderly, and why football is still an integral part of Leave-Voting Britain's identity. And we have US Murph on the Superbowl, Neymar's foot, a sneak a...more
It was a very, very satisfying weekend for Irish sports fans, with one of our most beloved sports-people Shane Lowry back in the winner's enclosure after a dramatic one-shot win at the Abu Dhabi Golf Championship on Saturday morning. Having led by three going into the final round, he found himself 4 shots back on the 12th tee before making three birdies to win by a shot - and he joins us on the show to discuss how he was determined not to relive the mistakes of the US Open in 2016 when he f...more
It seems a little early for the Premier League run-in jitters, but Liverpool were made to sweat for their 4-3 win over Crystal Palace. Mo Salah is the fall-guy, but why has everyone conveniently forgotten about Andy Robertson's handball in the build-up to what turned out to be the winning goal? James Horncastle joins us to discuss Maurizio Sarri, who launched the calmest ever verbal broadside against his own players after their 2-0 defeat to Arsenal on Saturday evening. Of the 3 rats that...more
Your weekly spritz of Second Captains on the (Leeds) World Service
Ireland haven't had three provinces in the quarter-finals of the European Cup since 2014, but they're looking good to get it sorted this year, judging by the form shown by Leinster, Munster and Ulster this weekend. There were three fantastic victories, and pinpoint precision kicking was the theme - with Joey Carbery, Ross Byrne and Jacob Stockdale all using the boot to devastating effect. Matt Williams tells us what Irish proficiency with the boot does to opposition defences, and why Munst...more
It's been a great weekend for Irish Premier League goalscorers and Brian Clough anecdotes, as Declan Rice, Shane Long and Jeff Hendrick ran riot while Martin O'Neill returned to management with Nottingham Forest. Meanwhile, Frank Lampard is convinced that Marcelo Bielsa has flouted English moral norms, but luckily for the Argentine he appears not to have broken any actual rules. It was not such a good weekend for Rio Ferdinand: when any controversy pits you and Richard Keys against the wo...more
It was the week that very nearly tore Second Captains apart - but we've made it to this time of the week again, unscathed, which means it's time for us to tell you what you've missed on the Second Captains World Service over the last few days. We debate the achievements of David Silva, and things get heated when Murph is asked to put his money where his mouth is. And we get a taster of what delights lie in wait for us this month as US Murph talks us through the first weekend of the NFL pla...more
Munster put in their best performance of the season and showed enough quality at the vital moments to keep Connacht at arm's length, and central to that effort were Joey Carbery and the centre pairing of Dan Goggin and Chris Farrell. But Shane Horgan still has some reservations about the Munster midfield - we discuss what Chris Farrell has to do to get to the next level for province and country, and what their best combination should be, when everyone is fit. The GAA announced a series o...more
Josh Robinson and Jonathan Clegg's new book "The Club: How the Premier League became the richest, most disruptive business in sport" provides a fascinating account of the business development of the Premier League, from the initial realisations in the 1980s that maybe football was something you could make money out of, to the multibillion-pound global business it is today. We speak to Josh about the story of the Premier League and the people who have shaped it. Where did the founders get the ...more
Happy New Year! Now go listen to this, our weekly reminder to you of the manifold benefits of being a Second Captains world service member. We will have all the best coverage of the premier league title race - for a race is what we have, after City's 2-1 win over Liverpool last night - and we remind you of what Brian Kerr is looking forward to in 2019. And we explain why Ken told Eoin to f**k off earlier this week.
Sometimes, after a long, tiring festive period, you might feel your energy levels flagging. So as you prepare for another big night of socialising, what you might need right about now is a solid dose of positive vibes, and feel-good stories. So we present to you two of the best from the sporting year of 2018 for our New Year's Eve show. Recorded live in front of a packed audience at the Liberty Hall Theatre, we speak to Limerick hurlers Kyle Hayes and Tom Morrissey, and Irish hockey heroe...more
It's Christmas Eve, and maybe you're on your way home for a couple of days of peace and quiet with your family. So to ease you on the road, here's a very special Christmas Eve show containing what might just be our favourite World Service interview of the year. When Paul Kimmage sat down with Richie Sadlier for an episode of the Player's Chair, we were unsure just how it would go. What we got was an emotional roller-coaster as Richie and Paul talked about where the anger and passion that ...more
A Shot Of Mourinho Gets The Sack, our breaking news podcast on today's world service.
Ep 1346: Munster Take A Beating, Leinster Hum, Ulster Puzzle Taking Shape by Second Captains
Jurgen Klopp knew that the power of narrative was against his team on Sunday evening, if this had been fiction, the writers could probably not have resisted inserting a "Mourinho Masterclass" plot twist. But this was reality not fiction, and Liverpool were too good. With Mourinho's hold on Manchester United visibly unravelling, how long before the club's decision-makers bite the bullet? We also talk a bit about the new Sunderland documentary which is showing on Netflix, and why the stony s...more
It's just about that time again, when we remind you what you've been missing on the Second Captains World Service. Our members will be hearing plenty from our live shows over the next couple of weeks, including our interviews with US Murph, Eamon Dunphy and the charismatic world champ Kellie Harrington. We revealed our Second Captains Sports Book Of The Year... and we reveal the barely-believable story behind the Eddie Jones "scummy Irish" clip that we unleashed on the world the week b...more
Clubs like Mullinalaghta (population: 447) just don't beat clubs like Kilmacud Crokes - it just, shouldn't happen. And yet in Tullamore yesterday, that's exactly what happened. Gary Rogers scored a penalty in the last minute of normal time to put them ahead, and he joins us on the show to talk about what it means for his club, for Longford, and for rural Ireland. Gerry Thornley and Eoin Reddan talk to us about Leinster's ever-rising expectations of themselves, JJ Hanrahan's performance at o...more
Saturday was a bad night for all the losers and haters out there as David Luiz showed just what kind of footballer and what kind of man he is against Manchester City. We also talk about the controversy ignited by the apparent racist abuse of Raheem Sterling by some Chelsea fans and his Instagram response linking such incidents with racist media coverage. Meanwhile in Scotland, Steven Gerrard is not happy with what he is seeing and he doesn't care who knows it. We also bring you the firs...more
Deontay Wilder was the champ, and the favourite going into this weekend's World heavyweight title bout, but Tyson Fury emerged with the plaudits and the praise, if not the victory, after their heavily disputed draw in Los Angeles. Legendary boxing commentator 'Colonel' Bob Sheridan joins Eoin and the42.ie's boxing correspondent Gavan Casey to discuss just how 'disputed' this draw was, Fury's outrageous comeback from drugs, PED busts and humongous weight gain, and what fight they want to see...more
City's imperious form puts all the challengers under unbearable pressure. Do Liverpool have the nerves of steel to respond? If they don't have nerves of steel, will luck do? And does there come a point at which repeated doses of luck crystallises into something more durable? Christian Eriksen didn't have his best ever game in the North London derby. Another Dublin date with destiny weighing on his mind or is he simply a little bit scared of mad dogs? Meanwhile as often happens after a dis...more
On this week's taster menu of the Second Captains world service, we invite you to sample some of our choicest, most delicious bon mots from the week just gone. Angry Richie Sadlier has been replaced by Rock of Sense Richie Sadlier in light of Ireland's managerial appointments, while Fintan O'Toole was in studio to talk to Ken on our latest politics podcast about Brexit, and "Heroic Failure", Fintan's brilliant new book. For the uninitiated, there's chess ARMAGEDDON, and there's also Jor...more
Ep 1328: Irish Managerial Merry-Go-Round - Schmidt Out, Farrell In, Kenny In (2 Years) - 26/11/2018 by Second Captains
Ken has this unfamiliar feeling....and he thinks it may be optimism?? Seven days ago, Martin O'Neill was preparing his Ireland team to face Denmark in our final Nations League fixture. Since then, he and Roy Keane have left their posts, and the FAI have hired not one but two managers, and a high profile assistant. Mick McCarthy is back in charge for one qualification campaign, and one qualification campaign only - before he hands over the reins to Stephen Kenny, who leaves Dundalk to ta...more
It's time for our weekly sneak peek at what we've been up to with our brilliant Second Captains world service members, and this week has been pretty bloody dramatic. The reaction to our extraordinary win over the All-Blacks continues with Shane Horgan, and we said goodbye to Irish football team manager Martin O'Neill. We have a debut for our new football pundit - ANGRY Richie Sadlier, a really brilliant interview with Andy Lee about his new book "Fighter", Eoin's Poems made a thoroughly un...more
It was a game between the teams ranked 1 and 2 in the world, and for a breathless 80 minutes, that's exactly what it looked like - a game of huge quality between two evenly matched teams. That Ireland were able to win such a match augurs well for the future, but there's enough in the here and now to keep us very satisfied indeed as Ken, Eoin and Murph reflect on a classic Irish sporting occasion, before we are joined by Gerry Thornley and Eoin Reddan to give us the Irish angle. And we h...more
Is this... rugby country? The very real chance that life may be imitating advertising is the appalling prospect that greets the Irish football team as they prepare to take on old buddies Denmark in Aarhus tonight. Seamus Coleman and Martin O'Neill insisted that they and the squad greatly enjoyed the win over New Zealand but can they really have enjoyed seeing the difference in the way the crowd at the Aviva reacted to the rugby and football versions of Ireland? Jonathan Northcroft joins us...more
It's our weekly taster menu of Second Captains fare - and this week things took a turn for the extraterrestrial as Ken wrestled with the news that alien invaders had been spotted along the west coast of Ireland. In light of that devastating bombshell, the build-up to Ireland vs New Zealand seemed almost frivolous, but we had TV3 New Zealand's Ross Karl in studio waxing lyrical about Beauden Barrett, Shane Horgan on the things that have to happen for Ireland to win, and lest we forget - tomor...more
Ireland defeated Argentina on Saturday, the team that has ended our World Cup on 2 of the last 3 occasions lest we forget, but rarely has a win over a bona fide top tier nation been so readily digested and then ignored in the rush to look ahead to next Saturday's clash with New Zealand. Gerry Thornley of the Irish Times and Matt Williams join us to take whatever learnings we can from last Saturday, before the hype begins in earnest. Are New Zealand all that brilliant any more? If they can ...more
Manchester City's crushing dominance in the Manchester derby means Manchester United are roughly back to where they were before the last international break. It feels now as though their recent string of comeback wins have been papering over cracks that haven't gone away, and the outlook for the season heading towards Christmas is bleak. Jack Pitt-Brooke joins us to analyse the Manchester derby. Was there anything United could have done to wrest the match away from City? And will fans ever r...more
Welcome to our spritz of world service goodness. This week we talked about happy Jose, the Manchester derby, Liverpool's mojo, and we made the case for Simone Biles as the most influential and most dominant athlete in the world. Plus there's Ireland V Argentina build up with Shane Horgan and Diego "Mr 99" Albanese tomorrow (next week we will be talking All Blacks)and we had a great show on Wednesday - Ken talked to David McWilliams about liberal Ireland's economic miracle.
As the Centenary edition of Poppy Mania hits full throttle, James McClean and Neil Lennon have both complained that they have become the victims of anti-Irish racism in the UK. Meanwhile Nemanja Matic has unexpectedly entered the drama as a striking new character who could have a big future. In this bumper football show, David Sneyd joins us in studio to talk about the FAI Cup Final, the difference between happiness and joy, and whether the future of Irish football is Irish-based. And we s...more
Ireland eased their way to an 8 try win over Italy in Chicago on Saturday evening, and the two players many people were looking at to make an impact on their debut starts for their country contributed 5 tries between them - the hard-carrying, turn-over king Tadhg Beirne, and the electric Jordan Larmour. Eoin Reddan and Gerry Thornley join us to talk about Larmour and why, as Eoin points out, he's not just good at the mercurial stuff, but is also doing all of the things Joe Schmidt is asking...more
A little taster of what was on the Second Captains World Service this week: Davy Fitz on whether he set out to settle scores in his new book, Kiwi conspiracy theories, rattled All Blacks.
It's almost certainly Julen Lopetegui's last day as coach of Real Madrid, after his side were hammered 5-1 at Camp Nou. We talk through the aftermath of the match and conclude that the European champions have problems that a change of coach is not going to solve. Jacob Steinberg was at Leicester this weekend to cover their match against West Ham. He joins us to talk about the helicopter disaster that claimed the lives of five people including the Leicester chairman, Vichai Srivadhannaprabh...more
A taster of what was on Second Captains World Service this week: Man United's cunning plan, Murray on privacy and gossip, Champions League fun, beefs and brawls with US Murph.
Katie Taylor had a routine defence of her world title in Boston on Saturday night against a fighter who was woefully unable to offer anything on the front foot. Rather more dramatic is a new documentary, "Katie", which gets a cinema release this week and which offers deep insight into Katie the person. Director Ross Whitaker (who has made "When Ali Came To Ireland" and "Axel" among a string of great Irish sports documentaries), is in studio along with Katie to talk to us about her relation...more
The Nations League may be gone for the next few weeks but the aftershocks continue to shake up the Irish punditry scene as Seamus Coleman takes clinical aim at Keith Andrews for criticising the team. Meanwhile the Premier League title race looks exceptionally tight with the top five potentially separated by two points if Arsenal manage to beat Leicester tonight. But does the table belie the real story - which is that Manchester City's form is looking increasingly ominous for everybody else? ...more
European Rugby is back, and it was an excellent week for the Irish provinces, as Leinster and Ulster both won against English opposition, and Munster came out of Exeter with a doughty draw. Gerry Thornley and former Munster back-rower James Coughlan join us to talk about Leinster's thrilling style, Ulster's young fullback, Tadhg Beirne's best game so far for Munster, and Freddie Burns' horror-show. Joe Brolly has called for the UFC to be banned, and Ken can't believe that he's talking abo...more
Ep 1291: Good Ship Ireland, McCarthy Charm Offensive, Natural Goalscorer Worship - 15/10/18 by Second Captains
So it turns out if you insult Khabib Nurmagomedov's family, religion, and country... he's not going to like it very much. Conor McGregor's pre-fight posturing might have just seemed like good PR, and even a good laugh, but Khabib was deadly serious when it came to seeking retribution in the ring, and against Mcgregor's team, in the immediate aftermath of the UFC lightweight world title fight. Petesy Carroll and Joe Callaghan are on hand to talk us through a fight in which McGregor was c...more
It turns out Pep Guardiola can do pragmatism with the best of them, and the much-hyped clash of Liverpool and Manchester City fizzled out in mild disappointment for an uncharacteristically conservative City and mild relief for misfiring Liverpool. Instead we had to satisfy ourselves with an astonishing game at Old Trafford, in which Jose Mourinho defied the implacable forces bent on his destruction with a masterclass in rabble-rousing. John Brewin joins us to discuss that match and how thi...more
**NOTE: This was initially a World Service members-only show broadcasted first on 2nd of October 2018. We have decided to re-publish the podcast today, the 4th of October, with the support of our members. For independent, member-led journalism like this in the future, please join the Second Captains World Service. Enjoy the show and thanks to all our members as always.** On the World Service today we have one of the most impactful interviews we've ever done. It's the story of former profe...more
Europe were deemed to be the underdogs going into the weekend's Ryder Cup, but it was very much an old-school Ryder Cup in the end - the US had all the stars, Europe had all the team spirit, and it ended with a convincing 7 point win for the home side. Malachy Clerkin had barely set foot back in Ireland before he came in to us, and he's joined by Lawrence Donegan to pick apart another European celebration... and another fractious US aftermath. Leinster and Munster will be feeling good a...more
Chelsea and Liverpool used to straight up not like each other. And yet their last two matches, despite being played out in a bizarre atmosphere of mutual respect and admiration, have been remarkably entertaining. Can you get it on even if you also get along? We discuss that match and some of the other weekend highlights, including a searingly honest and yet perplexing analysis of Manchester United's failings from Luke Shaw, and reports of Benjamin Mendy sailing close to the wind. Then we spe...more
Last year, Tiger Woods could barely walk. Last night, in chaotic, brilliant circumstances, he won his first PGA Tour championship in 5 years to reaffirm his return to the top of the sport. Not only has he battled back from technical, physical, psychological and emotional setbacks, he's also won a few new friends along the way. Author, podcast host and friend of the show Lawrence Donegan tries to put it all into historical perspective. Gerry Thornley and Mattie Williams join us to talk ab...more
Ep 1273: Pogba's Points, The Mendes Derby, Chelsea's Control Freak, Liverpool's Headstart - 24/09/18 by Second Captains
Dublin have been the best team in ladies football for the last two years, but yesterday they finally got the result they needed to truly frank that form, when they beat their old nemesis Cork in the All-Ireland final in Croke Park. 10-time All-Ireland winning legend Valerie Mulcahy and Malachy Clerkin join us to discuss whether this is a changing of the guard, and if Dublin are about to embark on a period of dominance similar to their men's team - we're not so sure. Sean Cavanagh was i...more
Stand-in host Ciaran Murphy, like many Manchester United supporters, is angry with the double standards employed by the fake news media. Is it not time to HAMMER TOTTENHAM? Why should they always get off easy? We discuss a Premier League Sunday that was dominated by unhappy shamrock Declan Rice and bench shamrock Matt Doherty, while on Saturday, victorious coaches Jurgen Klopp and Pep Guardiola were angry with their players for different reasons. Then Rory Smith and Jonathan Wilson join u...more
Ep 1262: Serena's Outrage, Why She Is A Nuance-Free Zone, Dominic Ryan Retires With Concussion, Solos In Slaughtneil - 10/09/2018
The Nations League turns out to be not bad, eh. We discuss the opening weekend of UEFA's new tournament, why it seems to be working despite the dull and convoluted format, and the latest reports on the strife in the Ireland camp. Then we talk to Peter Crouch about his new book, How To Be A Footballer, and look at some of the Jon Walters related highlights in the book.
Harry Arter has become the latest Ireland international to decide that he'd rather not join up with the squad right now. Martin O'Neill has admitted that his decision may have been influenced by an altercation with Roy Keane during a previous Ireland camp. We discuss the reasons why players play international football: do you have to be a super-patriot like James McClean, or does careerism have its place? Meanwhile Denmark have sacked off their entire squad because of a commercial dispute bet...more
Dublin are now utterly dominant, that dominance franked by a convincing fourth All-Ireland final win in a row against a valiant but outclassed Tyrone team. Oisin McConville thinks Tyrone missed an opportunity, and Mike Quirke tries to put this Dublin era into a historical context. From the moment the season began, it was clear that Dublin were heavy favourites to end the summer as champions. Is that level of superiority good for the game, should the Dubs care, and did Tyrone offer any...more
Oh Declan. The news that Declan Rice is "deliberating" over an offer to play his international football with England has sent Irish football into a tailspin, as many of us had already mentally installed Rice as the bedrock of the team for the next 15 years. We discuss possible solutions for Jose Mourinho as he wanders in an existential vacuum and Eoin describes how he dealt with getting Poped out on Sunday early afternoon. Richie Sadlier joins us in studio to discuss the news about Declan...more
The All-Ireland Football Final is next Sunday, a game in which few people, if anyone, give Tyrone much of a chance of discommoding Dublin. So just how do you get under their skin, and bring them to places they don't want to go? The only team capable of doing that in the last couple of years is Mayo, and we talk to their midfielder Seamus O'Shea about how to go toe-to-toe with Dublin, what Mayo bring to the table that Jim Gavin's team don't like, and why Tyrone's build-up couldn't be going ...more
Even in a bad game, in this extraordinary year hurling found a way to be exceptional, as Limerick dominated the All-Ireland champions Galway for 70 minutes, and still nearly got caught in injury time. Thus ends a 45-year wait for an All-Ireland title for Limerick, and they celebrated in style. We try and celebrate the year in review with two All-Ireland winners of our own, Eoin Kelly and Michael Duignan, and we discuss Limerick's winning blend of aggression and style which won the hardest-...more
Ep 1243: Performing Pep, Jose's Prep, Pogba's Attitude, Shane Duffy's Rise - 20/08/18 by Second Captains
This year's All-Ireland football final will be between Dublin and Tyrone, after Tyrone pipped Monaghan by a point, and the Dubs eased past Galway in the semis. The question is starting to be asked though - are even the Dublin fans bored by Dublin's dominance at this stage? Ken launches a stirring defence of his boys with a passionate charm offensive, before Mike Quirke and Oisin McConville join us to discuss if Dublin will be forced to break sweat at all this year. We talk about Brook...more
Ep 1237: Stupid Passing, Big Sam Roars, Mendy Media, Pogba Or Jose, What Are Arsenal? 13/08/18 by Second Captains
Welcome to a very special edition of the Second Captains Football Podcast, a live broadcast from the wonderful Liberty Hall Theatre in Dublin. Warning: contains *beef Our guest star is one of the best TV analysts in any sport, not just football, who spent an entire career racking up trophies at Manchester United…. We welcomed GARY NEVILLE to the stage. We talked to Gary about mistakes he has made and how he has learned from them, how he lost and regained his confidence, and how his time as...more
The hardest working man in showbiz, Ken Early, has been working right through the Bank Holiday weekend. He soaked up the goodwill towards Alisson Becker in the Aviva stadium, pored over the latest transfer news, and admires Steven Gerrard's Rangers mindset. Monaghan mastermind Malachy O'Rourke has guided the county to their first senior All Ireland football semi final in 30 years, and the locals are starting to believe. Meanwhile things have gone sour very quickly in Kerry, culminating in the...more
Hurling is no longer a sport, more a sneak preview of what the heavenly after-life will be like. Murph is apparently still walking in a daze around Croke Park, so we get Ken's thoughts on the sport of the Gods. Is this a freakish year, or has the sport got better? Can Clare win the replay? Is there anything Limerick can't do? And what's on John Mullane's Spotify playlist? Clare’s All-Ireland winning captain from 2013 Patrick Donnellan and Malachy Clerkin of The Irish Times talk to us about...more
The Premier League season starts on Friday week with Manchester United against Leicester, which is an interesting match-up because Jose Mourinho and Claude Puel are currently the first and second favourite managers to leave their jobs. Mourinho has spent much of pre-season complaining about the quality of the squad at his disposal and for once Ken has some sympathy with his position. If Manchester United aren't prepared to pay big money for the experienced players Jose wants, do they have...more
So it turns out those people writing off the Super 8s as a bad idea after one weekend might have been a little premature. It was a brilliant weekend of football, with pride of place going to David Clifford's injury time heroics to save Kerry from a second consecutive defeat. Oisin McConville and Micheal Quirke discuss Clifford's luminous display, Rory Beggan's kick-outs, and Eoin breathlessly reports from his excursion to Omagh for his beloved Dubs' 3-point win over Tyrone. We chat to...more
Mesut Özil has quit the German national team and issued a four-page statement that concludes "I will no longer be playing for Germany at international level whilst I have this feeling of racism and disrespect." The fact that arguably Germany's highest-profile sportsman no longer feels comfortable representing the national team makes this one of the biggest stories in Germany's sports history - a super-Saipan that dramatises the conflicts in Germany's increasingly fractious debate on immigrati...more
The opening weekend of the All-Ireland Quarter-Final Group Stages, otherwise known as the Super 8s, was supposed to be, well... super. But that's not quite how it panned out. Can we blame Murph? It was overshadowed entirely by a six-goal World Cup final, and by Limerick's thrilling 2 point win over Kilkenny in the All-Ireland hurling quarter-final. Michael Duignan pays tribute to Limerick's new-look team, and to Kilkenny, who lost nothing in defeat but are now reduced to being a signifi...more
Here ends a bizarre, uplifting, brilliant, outrageous World Cup - France are champions after a 4-2 win against Croatia, in a game where bafflingly they managed to play poorly for large stretches, and still win comfortably. Ken was there to witness Pogba, politicians and a penalty decision that shaped the game. For this latest VAR controversy, Ken peaks into the mind of the ref during the World Cup final. We speak to Philippe Auclair about this French team, their cautious, under appreciat...more
It was a brilliant weekend for the Irish girls at the European u-18 championships with four medals from three athletes, and some championship records and PB's to boot. Sarah Healy was the star of the show, winning a 1500/3000m double, but there was also gold in the 200m for Rhasidat Adeleke, and a silver for Sophie O'Sullivan, daughter of Sonia, in the 800m. Derval O'Rourke is in Finland at the World Under 20's and she tells us why we should both be excited and patient with this extraor...more
It was, for a change, quite routine on Saturday afternoon (by England tournament knockout game standards) as a 2-0 win over Sweden saw them qualify for only their third ever World Cup semi-final, and their first since 1990. Ken is a journalist, and so is unmoved by those who would suggest that he's not exactly embracing this England team... even if news that he was watching "The Wind That Shakes The Barley" on Saturday night leaked out online. Jonathan Liew of The Independent in London...more
World Cup Everything, Penalty Positivity, Primeval Ken, Becker Republic by Second Captains
Another weekend, another barely believable series of storylines. We said goodbye to Messi AND Ronaldo on the same day, clearing the way for the supporting cast to take centre-stage. Luis Suarez and Edinson Cavani are long-established in their own right, but Saturday felt like Kylian Mbappé's coming out party. We talk to Philippe Auclair about the French sensation who appeared in the football world apparently fully grown and self-assured. Ken was in the Luzhniki Stadium yesterday and ...more
Mayo have illuminated the last decade of football, but they were dumped out of the championship last Saturday night when they lost a classic All-Ireland football qualifier to Kildare in Newbridge. Oisin McConville is in studio to talk about the structure that Mayo's players need in order to get them over the line, why they might not get that with this manager, and why they're still the GAA story of the decade. Michael Duignan is with us as well as we look back on the Munster and Leinster...more
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Ulster final day is always pretty special, and Oisin McConville has been there for a few of them over the years. Leader of the DUP Arlene Foster was in Clones yesterday for her first, and we ask Oisin about the special significance of her decision to attend. Oisin and Mike Quirke cast their eye over the action on the field, as Dublin, Kerry and Donegal all completed routine provincial title wins. Shane Horgan joins us to talk about Ireland's dream rugby season - rounded off on Saturda...more
There may have been a few dissenting voices prior to this weekend, but be in no doubt now - this has been a brilliant World Cup. 27 goals in 6 games meant the tournament went turbo-charged in the last two days. Ken was on hand to see England's hammering of Panama Was he impressed? Raphael Honigstein tells us about the German reaction to Toni Kroos' impossible, magnificent last-minute goal to beat Sweden. And ahead of the last round of matches, we catch up with Oluwashina Okeleji as Ni...more
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Ep 1190: Ireland Learn And Win, Galway Into Super 8s, Connacht Spanner, Eddie's Future - 18/06/2018 by Second Captains
Ep 1189: Brazil, Argentina, Germany Toil, Ronaldo Soars, Mexico Roars, England Darts - 18/06/2018 by Second Captains
World Cup Trap, Ken The Samaritan, Spain Shenanigans, Super Eagles Fly by Second Captains
The All-Ireland hurling championship was always going to claim a few high-profile early exits, but it's still hard to believe that two of last year's All-Ireland semi-finalists, Tipperary and Waterford, are gone already. Michael Duignan is in studio to help us look back over Clare's seminal win over Tipperary in Thurles, and Kilkenny's ten-point turnaround against Wexford which saw them come back from the brink and land in a Leinster final. Shane Horgan watched Ireland against Australi...more
Ken goes to Russia tomorrow battling accusations that he has been spreading orientalist brain-rot via the pages of the Irish Times. Has he anything to say for himself? Has Putin got to him? Then Tim Vickery and Jonathan Wilson join us for our big World Cup preview. After finding out their respective earliest World Cup memories we turn to what we can expect on the field. Can Brazil rescue the reputation of South American international football? Can Argentina shake off their fatalism and p...more
James Lowe, King McGregor, Second Captains at the World Cup by Second Captains
We were in Kilkenny at the Cat Laughs Festival this weekend, and took two of our favourite comedians, David O'Doherty and Adam Hills, for a walk on the mild side. With the World Cup starting in Russia in a few days and sports fans everywhere about to take a break from real life, we asked them why does sport get so much attention/love/hatred? David also has some breaking news on the Real Madrid job, Adam tells us about his Rugby League career, and we explain the Socceroos World Cup curse....more
At half-time in Thurles yesterday, it looked like Tipperary's hurling world was falling in around them. Nine points down, at home to Cork, and with the criticism of the previous week's defeat to Limerick still ringing in their ears they somehow managed to resurrect their season, coming back to draw a thriller. Michael Duignan and Malachy Clerkin were there, and join us to talk about that, Waterford's horror opener, and Murph reports from Pearse Stadium as Galway's physicality and superior ski...more
We expected a dramatic Champions League final, and it didn't disappoint. Real Madrid are three-in-a-row champions of Europe, and Liverpool are left to rue Loris Karius' extraordinary, unprecedented performance, and Mo Salah's first half injury. Ken was there for us, and saw Karius' horror display, and the greatest goal he's ever seen, in the flesh. There's also his thoughts on Sergio Ramos being the exact opposite of a master of the dark arts, and we get reaction from all quarters, including ...more
The Leinster Championship was first into the fray last week, and with four games across both provincial round-robins yesterday, Eoin has called it - he's a big fan of the new-look All-Ireland hurling championship. We have Michael Duignan and former Tipperary legend Eoin Kelly in studio to talk about Cork and Limerick's opening day wins, and Dublin's second spirited display in seven days, which ends with them leaving empty-handed again. Will Tipperary's hurling public turn on their team, ar...more
Chelsea won the FA Cup but the future of the club looks uncertain, with question marks over the future of Antonio Conte, Eden Hazard and even Roman Abramovich, whose investor visa has not yet been renewed by the UK Foreign Office. Jonathan Wilson joins us to talk about what is likely to happen there over the summer, and whether Chelsea as we know them could weather the departure of their owner. We discuss the claims of Manchester United directors that the club's profitability is not affect...more
Leinster are European champions for a fourth time after their gruelling 15-12 victory over Racing 92 in Bilbao on Saturday, bringing them level with Toulouse as the most-decorated team in northern hemisphere club rugby. Shane Horgan, Matt Williams and Gerry Thornley are all on hand to discuss how Leinster have managed to turn it around just 2 years after losing 5 from 6 in their pool and Johnny Sexton questioning the culture of the club. With a barely believable strength in depth, a huge f...more
Barcelona threw away the chance to complete an unbeaten season in La Liga by resting Lionel Messi to ensure his availability for a moneymaking midweek friendly in South Africa. Meanwhile, Manchester City reached the 100-point mark in the Premier League. Is it too early to say The Game's Gone? Also under discussion are Mauricio Pochettino's "shtones" challenge to Daniel Levy, and the fact that Mikel Arteta is now the favourite to take over Arsenal. We talk to Tariq Panja of the New York Tim...more
To listen to Ken solve the world's problems, our compelling and uncomfortable interview with Eamon Magee, our Champions Cup preview and the start of our GAA coverage, become a World Service member now at secondcaptains.com.
Steven Gerrard has agreed to become the new manager of Rangers. Ken, who earlier today was exposed by his own sloppy journalism to the unforgiving nature of the Glasgow football rivalry, expresses his sympathies. Arsene Wenger left the Emirates for the last time as manager towing a six-litre keg of wine gifted to him by an appreciative press corps; meanwhile Chelsea are mounting a late charge for the Champions League after beating Klopp's Kop flops at Stamford Bridge. Have Liverpool lost thei...more
In football nothing lasts forever, neither grudges, nor coaching mind-melds. Over the weekend Alex Ferguson, Arsene Wenger and Jose Mourinho posed for a friendly picture on the sideline at Old Trafford, while Zeljko Buvac, Jurgen Klopp's "Brain", surprisingly left his role at Anfield - at least for now - on the eve of the Champions League semi-final second-leg. Napoli coach Maurizio Sarri is also clinging to the line that nothing lasts forever because it seems that Juventus' domination of Ser...more
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Ulster Rugby couldn't get the bonus point win against Munster that would have given them a sniff at a Pro14 playoff place, and now face a battle to even qualify for next year's Champions Cup. Shane Horgan give us his view on a turbulent, depressing season for them, the arrival of their new head coach Dan McFarland, and John Muldoon's emotional send-off at the Sportsground on Saturday. Katie Taylor unified world titles in the ring in Brooklyn on Saturday night, but judging by the online reacti...more
Leinster marched imperiously through to a first European Rugby Cup final since 2012 on Saturday, but Munster failed to complete the Irish double after a massively disappointing semi-final defeat to Racing 92 in Bordeaux yesterday - European Cup winners Shane Horgan and Barry Murphy assess the weekend's action. Are Munster just not good enough, or was Sunday a case of some really poor individual performances? Whatever the reason, it was a desperately disappointing display, and a sixth straight...more
It was a good weekend for Mo Salah, Ander Herrera, Olivier Giroud and Napoli, and a bad one for Shane Long, Declan Rice, Harry Kane and Mauricio Pochettino. We discuss the weekend of glowing tributes to Arsene Wenger, and what they have tended to leave out. What kind of manager should Arsenal go for after Arsene? John Brewin joins us to discuss Wenger's remarks after yesterday's match expressing disappointment with the failure of Arsenal fans to portray an appropriate image of unity to the...more
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It was Eoin McDevitt's birthday last week, and since he's not on Facebook, we all obviously neglected to get him anything. So it is no coincidence that today, our entire pod is dedicated to the life and work of the Eighth Wonder of the World, and li'l Eoin's favourite wrestler. "Andre The Giant" is the subject and the title of a brilliant new HBO documentary, and we speak to the show's producer Matt Maxson about Andre's amazing life, his Olympian drinking, his deep-rooted unhappiness, and ...more
Manchester City have won the league and sponsors Etisalat have saluted the achievement with one of the great football videos. We comb through the many "How City Did It" stories in today's papers and talk to Howard Hockin of the 93:20 podcast. When Pep asks his players a question, is he always expecting an answer? And if setting a points record would not necessarily be enough to establish City as the best Premier League team of all time, then which team deserves that distinction? Jose Mouri...more
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Patrick Reed won his first major title last night at the US Masters, seeing off a seriously off-colour Rory McIlroy, and rather more serious challenges from his American compatriots Rickie Fowler and Jordan Spieth. But why does everyone dislike him so much? Golf writer Lawrence Donegan joins us to explain the complicated backstory, from allegations of cheating during college, to arrests, arrogance and family drama. Michael Duignan said in February that Kilkenny wouldn't win another All-Ire...more
As one bald fraud to another, Eoin McDevitt has pity for Pep's pain. Saturday was a good day for the Hairy Man, who heaped indignity upon the Smooth Man. Is there still hope of redemption for City after their nightmare week? As for the matchwinner Paul Pogba, where has this player been until now? And can we expect to see more of him in the future? We analyse the game with Jonathan Wilson: why have Pep's teams developed this unfortunate habit of conceding several goals in several minutes? ...more
So it's never happened before, but after this weekend a first Munster-Leinster European Rugby Cup final is looking perhaps more likely than at any previous stage in this competition's history. Matt Williams and Gerry Thornley talk us through Leinster and Munster's thrilling wins over Saracens and Toulon, who between them had shared the last 5 titles. From Andrew Conway's miracle run, to Dan Leavy's almost supernatural performance in the back-row, it was an exceptional weekend of Irish rugby. ...more
**NOTE: Our members have requested that this podcast be made free-to-air and we're happy to do so. This was initially a World Service members-only show broadcasted first on 29th of March 2018. The podcast was re-published for all today, the 30th of March. For independent, member-led journalism like this in the future, please join the Second Captains World Service. Enjoy the show and thanks to all our members as always for their support.** The 'not guilty' verdicts in the Belfast rape trial ye...more
Mayo needed a win or a draw against Donegal in Ballybofey yesterday, and by hook or by crook, a draw is what they got. We talk to Footballer Of The Year Andy Moran about Kevin McLoughlin's wonder point to save their bacon, why their league form has been so patchy, and what we can do to get cynicism in the final moments of a game out of the sport for good. We also speak to Michael Duignan and Malachy Clerkin about the weekend's hurling, which saw Wexford inflict a first defeat in knockout h...more
An international football weekend with almost no international football on the actual weekend means that today we are forced to discuss whether rugby really is the heartbeat of the race, as some rugby pundits compulsively insist after every big rugby victory. If the oval ball game has displaced all other sports in the affections of the people, why do Irish viewers prefer Mrs. Brown's Boys? After we speak about some of the international action, Emmet Malone joins us to talk about Declan Ric...more
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For just the third time in our history, Ireland are 6 Nations Grand Slam champions. And this one was in a style that brooked no argument - from the moment Le Drop found it's way over the crossbar in Paris Ireland were the best team in the championship, accomplished front-runners, comfortable wearers of the favourites' tag and worthy champions. Sean Cronin gave us that image of a bruised and beaten Mike Brown sitting on the Twickenham turf with three minutes to go - a fine, last-ditch tackle e...more
Many managers have spoken about the risks of criticising players in public. The players know when they've messed it up, they say. No need to labour the point, they say. Keep the criticism behind closed doors, they say. As his treatment of Luke Shaw demonstrates, Jose Mourinho takes a different view. But why? Is there a higher purpose to this, beyond making it clear that certain squad members will be available this summer at a discount price? Jonathan Wilson joins us to analyse Mohamed Sala...more
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It's our fifth birthday, and it's celebrations all-round as we begin a massive week for the Irish rugby rugby team this Monday afternoon. Ireland are 4 wins from 4 games, scoring 17 tries in the process, and are now just a win in Twickenham away from a third Grand Slam in our history - so why are there still a few lingering questions surrounding our style? We talk to Shane Horgan and Gerry Thornley about the room for improvement still in this Irish team, the difference between peace-time r...more
It's the fifth birthday of Second Captains and we'll be bringing you some special interviews over the next month to mark the occasion - But first Eoin wants to know whether Ken is going to give Jose Mourinho the credit he deserves after a trademark tactical masterclass saw Manchester United crush Liverpool. Some LFC fans were spitting venom afterwards, others spitting mere saliva. Meanwhile things have got extremely shambolic at West Ham United, where the crowd apparently caught in five m...more
The Big Snow of 2018 is over, and after a weekend of sport denuded by the weather, we still have plenty to chew on this Monday afternoon. Team Sky, David Brailsford and Bradley Wiggins stand indicted again after the release of a report by the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport select parliamentary committee which outlines how Team Sky gamed the anti-doping rules to help their riders. Jeremy Whittle of The Times joins us to talk about the reputational damage done to everyone involved in Team S...more
MY lapel badge is apolitical. YOUR lapel badge is a political statement. The FA chief executive Martin Glenn has already apologised for appearing to bracket the Star of David as an offensive symbol alongside the emblems of ISIS and Nazi Germany, but was some kind of mess inevitable given the FA's confused policy on what is and isn't a political symbol? It feels as though the Premier League is falling out of love with Antonio Conte. The Chelsea manager has been accused of a "crime against foot...more
Ireland are three games in, and are still on course for a Grand Slam. And after another hugely enjoyable weekend of Six Nations rugby, certainly the championship appears well within our grasp. Shane Horgan and Gerry Thornley talk us through Ireland's roller-coaster 37-27 win over Wales, with plenty of errors as well as sparkling, physical rugby to consider. And with James Ryan, Jacob Stockdale and Chris Farrell all starring, we consider what might be one of Ireland's biggest ever lineups. ...more
Ken's absence last week has led some listeners to wonder whether an automated Ken-3000 replacement could be commissioned to cover future time off, remixing and replaying the vast library of past Jose Mourinho commentary. Ken adds some new clips to the algorithm's memory cache with a dramatic U-turn. Chelsea are now struggling to get back into the race for Champions League qualification. Has Antonio Conte forgotten that motivation is about more than simply telling your players what to do? D...more
Richie Sadlier joins Eoin and Murph in studio to talk about how football management can be an emotional business. When Ipswich took the lead against local rivals Norwich on Saturday, Mick McCarthy couldn't resist having a go at his own fans. Is there ever a right time to shoot back at the same people who have been criticising you for months? On reflection, probably not... but it doesn't mean it doesn't feel really good while you're doing it. We also praise the job Chris Hughton is doing as he...more
Without the burden of knowledge or insight, and freed from the pressure of expectation of Irish medals, the 2018 Winter Olympics has been a non-stop fun-a-thon in Second Captains HQ. Sinead O'Carroll, news editor with The Journal, told us on the World Service ten days ago why she spurns sleep in order to follow the Games, and she's in studio today to talk over all the hurt, heartbreak and heroics. If your sole focus is winning the All-Ireland, is it okay to throw your hat at the league? Th...more
Ireland remain on track for the Grand Slam after their fully-expected 56-19 win over Italy, but what happened that we didn't expect? Shane Horgan and Gerry Thornley give us their thoughts on week 2 of this year's Six Nations championship. Tadhg Furlong and Robbie Henshaw going down injured certainly wasn't in the play-book, and the expected stern Italian resistance for the first 60 minutes didn't materialise either. We also didn't see the impact of the Irish bench that we expected, but is ...more
It was an amazing weekend for the King of the Golf but a bad one for Chris Smalling who finds himself serving as the Manchester United 'Pinata of the Week'. Jose Mourinho debuted a new magnanimous personality at St. James' Park but there is one person on whom the sunbeams of his warmth do not fall: his superstar midfielder Paul Pogba. Hooked twice in less than two weeks with United losing: is this war? Meanwhile Antonio Conte has explained that he is a victim of his own success at Chelsea:...more
This is a special World Service episode that we feel everyone should hear so we've made it available to all. World Service members will be familiar with our recent coverage of the extraordinary events in a Michigan courtroom, where the victims of ex-USA Gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar finally had the opportunity to stand up to their abuser in court. It’s the sort of justice that’s long been denied to the alleged victims of George Gibney, the ex-Ireland swimming coach. It’s almost 25 year...more
With the clock entering the 83rd minute, things were looking extraordinarily bleak for Ireland. And then, from 42 metres out, with one swing of his right boot, Johnny Sexton reignited Ireland's Championship hopes and gave us a memory to savour from week one of the 2018 Six Nations. Denis Hickie and Shane Horgan were just as impressed as the rest of us by Sexton's steely resolve in the dying moments, and were mightily relieved that his piece of magic gives us the chance to work on the defici...more
Yesterday, after Crystal Palace drew 1-1 with Newcastle, Roy Hodgson laid down some truth... With Roy's words in mind, we try to spend as little of today's show as possible discussing the penalty decisions at Anfield, as some other things happened besides. ('As little of today's show as possible' still equals a lot of time discussing those decisions). Rory Smith of the New York Times joins us to talk about touchline misconduct, and whether Liverpool currently have much to offer beyond the ...more
Eoin and Ken give you a rundown on what you missed on the world service this week with some help from US Murph, Shane Horgan, Matt Williams, Millie and Gareth Edwards. Join now at secondcaptains.com
The National Leagues are back, and first-day drama came mostly from Killarney, where Kerry pulled out a dramatic last-minute win against Donegal with a team full of fresh-faced young guns. Micheal Quirke and Oisin McConville are back in tandem to talk us through the major issues, including teams that are jaded in January, footballers who have over-dosed on the weights this winter, and the Dubs getting back in the swing. Roger Federer won the Australian Open on Sunday so we talk to the ...more
A growing number of Manchester United fans are peeved that Pep is getting a pass from the lamestream media despite his increasingly histrionic touchline behaviour. Does the City boss deserve condemnation for his latest display at Cardiff over the weekend? A terrific game at Anfield was overshadowed by controversy over VAR. We try to unpick the problems with a system that puts all the responsibility for calling in video replays on the referees themselves. Raphael Honigstein joins us to anal...more
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After the pool stages of the European Rugby Champions Cup, it's fair to assume that, despite Ulster's defeat, we have Irish provinces back at the business end of the competition, and are once again capable of winning the whole thing. Shane Horgan and Gerry Thornley of the Irish Times discuss Leinster's almost-routine defeat of Top 14 leaders Montpellier away, Munster's dominant win over Castres, and how they need not fear any of the remaining teams in the competition. Plus there's a scu...more
Marco Silva, recently the most in-demand coach in the Premier League, finds himself suddenly out of a job. He showed no loyalty. But given that loyalty is not part of Watford's short-termist managerial model, do they have any right to demand it? Meanwhile, the struggle for control of Newcastle United is being played out in the media. How convincing a case is Amanda Staveley making that now is the time for Mike Ashley to hand over the keys to the club? Jonathan Wilson joins us to analyse ...more
Ken remains in the midst of a cigarette crisis. To calm him, we asked someone to rob his bike and invited Eamon Dunphy into studio to debate him. Then, we asked him to jump in a fake shower with Murph to record a promo for the Dunphy v Ken extravaganza.
Munster might be kicking themselves after losing narrowly in Paris to Racing 92, but going into the last weekend of the European Rugby Champions Cup pool stages our 3 provinces all lead their pools. Gordon D'Arcy and Shane Horgan look back over another positive weekend of results, and talk about what we can learn from the Gerbrandt Grobler controversy, as the South African lock previously banned for 2 years for PED use made his Munster 'A' debut. And as Meath emerge victorious in the GAA...more