SADLY, last week, former Cork City physio, Timmy Carey passed away.
Carey was member of the City staff during the club’s 1992/1993 title winning side and two players in that side Stephen Napier and Declan Daly will miss their former colleague and have fond memories of their time with Carey.
“Timmy was the heart and soul not just of the team but of the club.
"Players pass through the club, but Timmy was everything the club is about and it’s people like him that keep a club going and he will be missed,” Napier said.
“Timmy was a guy that you would notice just how important he was to the group when he wasn’t there.
"The season we won the league he was every bit as important as anyone else at the club,” says Daly.
“He did everything for the team. He wasn’t just the physio, but he would arrange our pre-match and post-match meals.
"During games, I would look over at the side and our manager Noel O’ Mahony would be shouting instructions and right next to him would be Timmy coaching and encouraging the lads.
"His job title might have been physio, but he was much more than that.
“He had a great calmness, no matter how serious an injury was on the field. It was never a panic or rush with Timmy.
"Players would fear the worse with injuries, but Timmy had the skill of calming a fella down and making him feel relaxed.
“It was a lot different back then being a physio to nowadays. The importance of a physio when Timmy was there was huge.
"We had a small squad of around 16 players and there were only fourteen in a matchday squad and you were only allowed two substitutes.
"We would play on a Sunday and sometimes we could have a game on a Tuesday or the next day if it was a bank holiday Monday.
"So, it was his job to make sure the lads were fit and ready to play, which was a lot of pressure, but he always managed to do it.
“I had loads of dealing with Timmy between bandages and stitches. I had one serious injury where I ruptured my Achilles tendons.
"All I could say is, you couldn’t ask for a better man to have in your corner when something like that happens.
"I knew, that Timmy knew, I was in trouble. But he was just that friendly face that you needed to calm things.
"He would be with you the whole way on the journey right through to your recovery. That’s just the type of fella that he was.
“He was definitely an old school physio. It was rubs; it was the magic sponge.
"He worked with Noel O’Mahony who didn’t believe that there were such things as hamstring or calf injuries. Timmy had a great relationship with Noel.
"I remember just after the gym was put into the training ground -something Noel wouldn’t have a whole pile of time for – we were out training, running around and Noel asked where was Fergus O’ Donoghue.
"Someone said, he’s just doing a light bit on the bicycle in the gym because he’s got a tight hamstring. Noel lost the plot.
"He told Timmy to get Fergie out there because there’s no hamstring injuries. So, Noel always managed to get lads through the hamstring injuries,” says Napier.
“Timmy was a great character. Everybody got on with him. But equally, he was excellent at what he did.
"Medically, he was a paramedic. It was good to have him in the squad and in the dressing room. Sometimes, you might have someone in there with a first aid bag, and you would wonder, do they know what they are doing?
"You could trust Timmy because he knew what he was doing but he was a great character.
“As a person, he was someone you could talk to very easily. He blended into the dressing room very easily.
"He wasn’t someone that sat in the corner. He was an active person in that dressing room.
“He was very professional. Even with the first aid bag or the box, everything was very precise.
"He had it organised; it was all there. Everything was in the bag that he needed.
"He prided himself in being ready and prepared medical wise if there was anything going to happen,” added Daly.
My condolences go out to Timmy Carey’s family and friends. May he rest in peace.