Derek McGrath opens up on becoming the next Waterford manager 11 months ago

Derek McGrath opens up on becoming the next Waterford manager

Brought to you by Centra

Derek McGrath has spent a year out of the Waterford job and it probably feels like he hasn't really been away.

He's kept his own distance. he's done his best to switch off from it but his name has constantly been bandied about.

Páraic Fanning stepped into the big shoes left behind by the Deise manager of five years but a poor, poor championship started the talk of his successor long before Fanning made the decision to move aside.

And Derek McGrath's name was never far from those conversations.

Now that the job is available, McGrath spoke exclusively to SportsJOE about the possibility of a return to the hotseat on Corbett & McGrath's Big Build-Up, brought to you by Centra.

"I was talking about it to my wife and my wife was saying, ‘would you be mad to consider it?’ I was saying I’m not sure how I feel about it and that’s not giving you a less than candid answer, that’s the reality of how I feel now at this stage," he said.

"Is it time for someone else to have a go at it as well? Maybe step away from it and go back into the school scene and have a run at a Harty Cup team for four or five years and then maybe have another go at it.

"So that’s where I am, that’s where my head is at. I’m not saying I’m disinterested or interested.

"I think there’s a committee being put in place over the next couple of weeks in Waterford and if they consider me to be one of those people who are suitably qualified for the job, I’m not saying I’d be willing or unwilling to talk to them, but we’ll see what happens."

McGrath is conscious that the county isn't short of candidates vying for the role and good men who probably deserve a crack.

"I think there’s a lot of good people in Waterford that are interested in the job," he told SportsJOE.

"And I’d be slow to stand in their way in terms of what they could bring to it. People that have waited in line up to this that might be more qualified and maybe perhaps have even more energy and that’s what you need. You need absolute enthusiasm and energy for the job and I’d have to question whether I have that completely after one year soldiering, if you like."

Of course, there's unfinished business with Derek McGrath and Waterford.

They reached the All-Ireland final in 2017 and he's spoken about his regret - the changing room speech he might've tempered, what they would do if they had to do it again. And he does think that he probably could get more out of the same group.

"Yeah, you probably do think that.

"I think when you’re out of management, you say to yourself, ‘Jeez, what would I do differently?’ It’s like when you’re out of any job or you’re out of playing like Lar, you say, ‘Jeez, if I had the chance to do that again, I’d go at it in a particularly different way’.

"Would you be better at the job? That’s debatable.

"You talk about Páraic’s tenure… in 2018, we didn’t win a championship match either. We drew with Tipperary in the first round and that’s continued.

"So in terms of a job where the only way is possibly up, it’s a good opportunity in terms of… because we haven’t won a game for eight championship games so there’s a possibility of improving things there if you like.

"Could you improve? I think you could but everything is so cut-throat now with the Munster championship. You’d have to have all your wits about you and all your energies about you to commit to it."