Walsall manager Darrell Clarke: Rory Gaffney loan didn't work out

By Liam Keen | Walsall FC | Published:

Walsall manager Darrell Clarke has admitted Rory Gaffney’s loan deal ‘didnt work’ after the striker cut short his spell at the club.

Rory Gaffney

The Irishman’s loan was terminated at the beginning of the week as he left parent club Salford to join Shamrock Rovers on a permanent deal.

“You don’t paper over the cracks, it didn’t work out,” Clarke said.

“Rory is honest as the day, his running stats were very good, very committed to the cause but he didn’t get the rub of the green.

“I think it was the Mansfield game where he’s missed two or three great chances, cut a bit of stick and never really recovered to be honest with you, although he gave us everything.

“I’ve known Rory for a while and we wish him the best at his new club.

“It’s one of those things that comes up and maybe it will give one or two of our younger players an opportunity quicker.

“We’ll see how things develop but I don’t think he’d have played a lot between now and the end of the season, he’s just come back from a couple of months out from injury as well so he wasn’t going to play many more games

“I have got half an eye on the future as well so I think it was best for all parties and we wish him all the best.”


The 30-year-old netted once in 22 Saddlers appearances this season but failed strike a cord with the fans.

Supporters regularly criticised the forward for his performances, but Clarke puts that down to a loud ‘minority’.

“You say relationship with fans, at every football club there is a 10-15 per cent minority that likes to be heard,” he added.

“Players go through good form and bad form and I have to take that away and focus on working on the players and improving the players.


“We live in a country where we want to build up players to knock them down, that’s the beauty of the beast.

“There’s always going to be scapegoats at every football club whether it’s a manager, chairman or players.

“Everyone has different opinions on players and they have their favourites and don’t understand why he’s not in the team or why he’s not playing but for me it’s about making sure we get the best out of individual players.

“With Rory Gaffney, he struggled and he’s first to admit it didn’t work out but he gave me everything and as a manager that’s what you can ask for.”

Liam Keen

By Liam Keen
Sports Reporter

Sports journalist at the Express & Star, primarily covering Walsall FC and grassroots sport across the Black Country and Staffordshire. Got a story? Get in touch on 01902 319456.


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