GAVIN BAZUNU and Caoimhín Kelleher provided the blueprint – and now Elaine Harte wants her Tipperary goalkeepers to follow suit.
The eight-time All-Ireland champion with Cork is with the Tipp men’s team, where she is the new goalkeeping coach under David Power – and she is encouraged by the talent on offer at Evan Comerford, Michael O’ Reilly and Kuba Beban.
The 41-year-old believes footballers Bazunu and Kelleher – who are battling for the Ireland No 1 shirt – are examples of how Gaelic footballers should build their skill sets .
“At the end of the day, your goalkeeper is like a midfielder at this stage,” said Harte.
“You are also part of the team, you have to be able to help your defenders if needed and you have to be able to play.
“That’s what Éamonn Ryan always tells me and the team when we play with Cork, a goalkeeper has to be a good player first.
“You have to be able to play, solo with both feet, kick with both feet, pass the ball with both hands. You never know when you need both sides to get out of trouble.
“In this day and age, goalkeepers have to be good football players and you can’t get away with that.
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“Today they are more involved in the game. I think that’s the really important part.
“People like Caoimhín Kelleher and Gavin Bazunu, they are showing it in England, composure on the ball. That’s the way we have to go now here. You can’t have a goalkeeper who can’t play the ball.
“You can see the skill level, they are really good footballers here. This is the position they are in. Number one, you’re a very good footballer, but number two, you’re honing the skills that make them a great goalkeeper. ”
Harte is one of the best goalkeepers of her generation, featuring on the Cork team that dominated the 2000s.
Aside from winning at Dublin in 2010, Cork won every TG4 All-Ireland SFC tournament between 2005 and 2016.
Club Women Moyne-Templetuohy was part of eight of those wins.
Harte is from White’s Cross in Cork but she moved to Tipperary in 2004.
She was the manager when the Tipperary ladies were crowned All-Ireland B championships in 2014 before she made her way up to the adult team, where she acted as a selector.
Harte added: “I wouldn’t do a bad job coaching at men’s clubs. I will always focus on the women.
“And a lot of my time will be spent working as club secretary and coaching with the women here in Moyne-Templetuohy. That’s what I’ve been focusing on for the past few years.
“This is going to be my first step in the men’s field and so far, so good. They were really welcoming. The boys are taking in everything I’m saying.
“It was a really professional set-up and I was really impressed with it.
“It was an honor when asked, David Power phoned me before Christmas there to see if I was interested.
“After chatting for a bit with the family here, it was nice to be able to get back to him and say we’ll try and see how it goes.
“It was a challenge but we enjoy the challenge, you need to have challenges to keep going.
“It’s a challenge that I’m looking forward to, hopefully improving in some way.
“There are a lot of very good coaches on the women’s team who are now being looked at from the male side.
“It always comes from the other side, it always goes from man to woman. But if men can come to women, I’m sure women can come to men’s games too.
“It’s seamless. If it can go one way, it can go another. This is the beginning of something we can only improve on and get more women to join the men’s side. “
https://www.thesun.ie/sport/gaa-football/8208768/harte-build-on-bazunu-kelleher-blueprint-tipperary-goalkeeper-coach/ Eight-time All-Ireland champion Elaine Harte wants to build on Bazunu and Kelleher blueprint as Tipperary goalkeeping coach