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10th Jun 2019

“Slate me, I played crap” Jenny Murphy on World Cup pressure and honest analysis

It's all eyes on the FIFA Women's World Cup on PlayXPlay this week

Niamh Maher

“Give me some proper analysis”

If you haven’t been following the FIFA Women’s World Cup, why are you reading this article? (please keep reading). The latest episode of PlayXPlay is live and on this week’s show our host Jenny Murphy is joined by Dublin footballer Niamh McEvoy and SportsJOE editor Conan Doherty as they take a look back at the first weekend of action.

From Fox Sports taking Ada Hegerberg to task, to Phil Neville demanding more from his England squad, the panel are discussing what it truly means to represent your country… something  Jenny knows a thing or two about.

Listen in at 23:42 below to hear how “winning while playing badly” could be the greatest gift an athlete can get:


It could be argued that representing your country is the pinnacle of any athlete’s career, with that privilege comes intense pressure as well as a nice dollop of media scrutiny. When it comes to World Cup pressure and the emotions that go along with it, Jenny Murphy is all too familiar:

“It’s huge pressure a home World Cup, it’s lovely I’ve been there… but yeah sometimes if you’re not in the right headspace it can be tough. There’s no norm going into a world cup it’s different every year because players change and coaches change. At our home World Cup in 2017, I was a bit more of a senior player and there was more talk of us in the media but to be honest that wasn’t difficult because at the start of 2014 there wasn’t really much chatter, we were in a tough group so there was brief mention but no in-depth analysis. For me anyway I stayed away from social media and you kind of go into a bit of a bubble”.


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Murphy went on to explain that as a player you have to have blinkers on:

“There’s such a short turn around of games, every fourth day you’re playing so you don’t have time to check what journalists slated you or if you played well or not, it’s too tiring and too time consuming to do your recovery and do your analysis while prepping for the next game and hopefully meet your family in your downtime”.

Also on this week’s show we’re treated to SportsJOE editor Conan Doherty (randomly enough) comparing football to Game Of Thrones, he admits that you have to get people to bite:

“It’s on a bigger scale but with the men’s World Cup I hate saying this but it’s taken as a given that people will watch it, it’s almost like the last season of Game Of Thrones… people hate it but they’re gonna keep watching it because you’re invested. With this because there’s so much more coverage, people are watching it for the first time and they’re critiquing it like they’re watching the first season of Game Of Thrones and they’re deciding whether or not they come back”.

We’re also looking back at the Irish Women’s Hockey team successful weekend on the long road to Tokyo and there’s a fairly abysmal attempt at the Irish county quiz… unmissable stuff!