Posts Tagged ‘ Sam Maguire ’

All Ireland SFC Preview: Dublin To Edge Tight Encounter


A turbulent summer comes to an end this Sunday when two titans clash at headquarters in the All Ireland Final. Their journey to the final has seen them outlast 31 other teams enroute to Croke Park amid a season complimented by numerous historical incidents, ranging from London’s journey to the Connacht Final and Croke Park to the controversial introduction of hawk eye.

But now the dust has settled and only two teams remain, who will take home the illustrious Sam Maguire?

All Ireland SFC Final Preview

Dublin v Mayo

Mayo have failed to win an All Ireland since 1951 and have been coming up short in every final since. However, Mayo have been improving a lot in the last few years and I would expect that they will win All-Ireland between now and 2016, but i don’t think it will happen for them on Sunday in Croke Park.

Dublin have been impressive to date , particularly in the high scoring thriller with the Kingdom which saw them emerge victorious by seven points to claim their place in the All Ireland Final. Mayo need to prevent the Dubs from running riot in Croke Park to stand a chance of ending a 52 year silence in the west.  Mayo will need to punish every mistake their opponents make and need to be ruthless when the opportunity arises. I Still fancy Dublin to score more easily than the westerners because their forwards are more suited to the occasion of winning an All Ireland. The Mayo defence will be given a real test from the direct running style of the Dubs. Dublin should edge this game on the scoreboard.  This game will be fast paced, hard hitting and very physical. Mayo need to show the hunger, desire and passion that they have failed to show in the last number of years, but importantly they need to show something unique to win an All Ireland. Mayo need to be careful in their defence as Dublin will score goals especially with Bernard Brogan back to his best. Possession will be crucial in this game, but Mayo need to convert some simple chances like they failed to do in their previous games, like score a 21 yard free right in front of the post. Dublin will be rock solid when it comes to converting frees and this is one advantage that they have over Mayo.

Mayo have already names their starting fifteen for the final , fielding a team that shows no changes from their semi final victory over Tyrone. Crucially for Mayo manager James Horan he has been able to name top scorer Cillian O’Connor in his starting ranks as the forward has overcome injury.

Dublin manager Jim Gavin has yet to name his team.

Mayo team :  R Hennelly; T Cunniffe, G Cafferkey, C Barrett; L Keegan, D Vaughan, C Boyle; A O’Shea, S O’Shea; K McLoughlin, K Higgins, A Dillon; C O’Connor, A Freeman, A Moran (Capt).

Verdict:  Dublin

*Read Danny Morrissey on three key battles which could define Sunday’s final here.*

All-Ireland MFC Final Preview

Mayo v Tyrone

This game will be extremely interesting because you have two very different brands of football being played here. Tyrone will try control the pace of the game and try to keep up with Mayo for most of the game and then turn the game in their favour. I think Mayo will emerge from this game as winners as they have been putting up big scores and have been scoring goals more at will than their northern counterparts. Tyrone have plenty of ability to prevent Mayo from scoring a lot and pulling away in this game. Mayo have shown more promise than previous years with most of their forwards scoring goals. Mayo will need to find the back of the net on Sunday to claim a minor title, something which they haven’t achieved since 1985. Tyrone will keep the game as tight as possible by deploying a structured defensive system , commonly referred to as a blanket defence.  Mayo’s young guns should come through this showdown as they have shown more resolve this year than in previous attempts. This curtain raiser may not set the tone for the senior final but one thing is for sure, the future of Mayo GAA is destined for success.

Verdict:  Mayo

Image courtesy of

Has Anybody Got a Ticket?

It happens every single year. All-Ireland Final day approaches, your local club is fresh out and every single one of your contacts has mysteriously disappeared at the same time. So you have to come face to face with reality – you simply haven’t got a ticket. However many enterprising individuals take their begging to the nation, and this year is no different. Dublin man Ray O’Brien, who has lived in Mayo for the past 12 years has recorded and uploaded his Song for Sam up on Youtube, where it’s already garnered almost 800 views.

And it’s not half bad either:

Race For Sam Maguire Heats Up As Qualifiers Enter Final Stage

samGalway v Cork

Galway will be hoping to improve on their victory over Armagh, with inspiration to come from players like Armstrong, Sice and Meehan. The tribesmen will face an uphill challenge and must improve on their last performance to come out on top in this round 4 qualifier. Cork will be hoping to erase the memory of their Munster final defeat to Kerry. Cork need players like Paul Kerrigan and other players to step up in this game to ensure that they progress. Cork have much more strength in-depth than Galway. The tribesmen have bounced back nicely and seem to be improving after a few of years of silence in the west however it may not be enough.

Verdict: Cork  Continue reading

Sheehy Confident of Killarney Factor

Mikey Sheehy has claimed that home advantage could give Kerry the upper hand over Tyrone in Saturday’s All-Ireland football qualifier.

The Kerry legend is also expecting his home county to kick back after their lucky evasion of an embarrassing defeat in Mullingar last weekend.

He is quoted in the Irish Independent as saying “It doesn’t come much harder, does it? If this game was in Omagh – or a neutral venue for that matter – I’d be sceptical about Kerry’s chances.”

“But since it’s in Killarney, I’d be expecting a huge backlash from the Kerry lads. They know how big this game is. The whole county is talking about it. We’re not used to being out of championship in July, so the pressure is on to make sure it doesn’t happen.

“The Kerry supporter in me would believe there’s another big kick in the squad – there will need to be because the level of performance against Tipperary, Cork and Westmeath wouldn’t be anywhere near high enough to beat Tyrone. There was a lot missing in all three games and it has to be sorted out or else the season will be over on Saturday.”

Sheehy added that it will not take a lot of inspiration to motivate the Kerry footballers against Tyrone. The O’ Neill county have been a thorn in the side of the Munster men for over a decade now, with the All-Ireland final of 2006 still living vividly in both sides’ minds.

“The Kerry lads have a ferocious incentive to win this one. That won’t win a game on its own, but it’s a big help. So, too, is home advantage. The Kerry support will get behind the team in a big way because they know the importance of this game.”

“This is as big a qualifier game as we’ve ever had. It’s great for the championship, but one very big name will be gone by Saturday. I hope it’s not Kerry.”

Meanwhile, Kerry and Tyrone supporters are being encouraged to get to Fitzgerald Stadium well in time for Saturday’s vital All-Ireland football qualifier. A crowd of 25,000 is expected and there are fears that the match may be delayed if fans do not respect the throw-in time of 3pm.

Dublin:All Ireland Champions 2011

Congratulations to Dublin on their All Ireland success, beating Kerry by 1-12 to 1-11. Stephen Cluxton converted a last minute free kick to end the Dubs 16 year wait to bring Sam Maguire back to the capital. 

Match report to follow.