Dublin player Brian Howard has said that new manager Dessie Farrell’s focus on positivity gave him the confidence to take his game to the next level.
While Jim Gavin was winning All-Ireland’s almost every year with the senior team, Dessie Farrell was ensuring that Dublin’s conveyor belt of talent never ceased.
Along with a lot of his teammates on the senior team now, Howard was one of those who played under Farrell while he was the county’s under 21 manager.
He told OTB AM it was brilliant that Farrell got the promotion after Gavin stepped away following the historic five-in-a-row win.
“He’s not a new face, a stranger to any of us and neither are his backroom team,” said Howard.
Having a player and manager as successful as Farrell in charge was a huge boost to an already buoyant Dublin dressing room. When asked about what it was like playing for Farrell previously, Howard opened up on his relationship with Farrell.
“He was a big, big influence on me going into the senior team because he was the one that got me confident and when I was meeting him one-to-one he was giving me what I needed to hear to push me on,” he said.
“Thankfully that year we won the All-Ireland so he was doing everything right. Then, he pushed me on in the right direction to senior and I’m grateful for that,” Howard said.
He credits Farrell’s focus on telling players what they’re good at rather than overly focusing on negatives as pushing him on “to the next level.”
“To hear the stuff that you’re good at, and hear it from a different person is huge. To hear that in sports, and outside of sports, that everyone is good in their own way is huge.
“When he [Dessie Farrell] sat me down and gave me that bit of confidence it really pushed me on.
“I might’ve been low on confidence, or not performing well, and we had the chat and the next few games it really helped me and I was confident going forward.
“Everybody has their strong points and obviously their weaker points.
“I know for me that I get bogged down on the weaker points because they’re the ones you need to improve on, but it’s just as important to develop your stronger skills because they’re the things that have got you there in the first place,” Howard said.