Excellent post from Kery forum - worthy of a discussion all of its own …

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Round 5 - Dublin v Kerry - 11 March

There are 39,000 registered players in Dublin. This is not insurmountable .

The monies invested in Dublin were largely funded by the sports Council. These monies were invested in GoGames and at primary level. The Games promotional officers went into primary schools to promote the games . The value for money in this initiative is up for debate . As someone who has had a role in employing GPO’s and also worked in the primary sector I can say ithe dividends of this investment are vastly overstated and fairly intangible.

Crucially the youngest of the Dublin panel wouldn’t have benefitted directly from this investment at all as they had in almost every instance graduated beyond this stage of the games by the time of its implementation .

The fact is that this team is not financially doped . It’s inaccurate to portray it as such and it undermines the hard work, stunning talent and great management they are the proponents of .

. It also undermines the real issue that is likely to develop.

I absolute agree a storm is on the horoizon and that the GAA has an absolute obligation to invest the same amount in coaching throughout the country as is invested in Dublin .

I darseay you’d look long and hard to find a Dub that does not believe so.

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The lack of recognition or appreciation for one of the most successful and skilful teams ever to play Gaelic football is quite remarkable. Dublin have always been the team that many ‘love to hate’ but among some the unprecedented success of recent years has brought a begrudging nastiness to the equation that hasn’t been there before. Sad enough that there is this lack of appreciation and recognition, but it is now too often also accompanied by an attempt to undermine the tremendous achievements of a wonderful team. Population, money, whatever you are having. No acceptance that over the last decade or so we have witnessed, and continue to witness, some of the finest players ever to wear the Dublin jersey.

The term financial doping is not just inconsiderate and disingenuous, but highly insulting and unfair to those involved in an amateur organisation. Are we to believe that Brian Howard is solely the product of financial investment? Did the ‘doping’ almost backfire in making him a rugby player? Perhaps the boy who could also have joined the Leinster academy might just have some genuine natural talent? No doubt he has been coached well at school and club level over the years but his natural talent is also surely there for all to see – and he is not alone. If Brian is the product of ‘financial doping’ how come the other 30 lads in his class or club did not become Dublin players? How come all the children that participate in the wonderful Dublin coaching structures at club and school level are not playing for Dublin? Where are our All Ireland winning hurlers and in all this process? This ‘doping’ system is clearly failing the county.

There are hundreds of thousands of euro expended on coaching in Dublin every year. The county board should not be apologetic about it. This money is not about building a super race of footballers or hurlers – or developing only those who show the greatest potential. It is all-inclusive and caters for each and every level of ability. This money is spent on every boy and every girl in the club and school. It is about the basics, the catch, the kick, the hook, the lift, the block, the solo, the bounce, fielding, tackling, shooting, striking. It is about participation and fun. It is about nurturing a love of the game. It is about developing an awareness of Gaelic games, of the club, of the organisation. In a bustling city where people are often too busy to interact it is about giving people an identity – a sense of purpose, a sense of place.

Con O’Callaghan is a wonderful role model for Dublin GAA. Like hundreds of thousands of kids involved in sport around the country he has been coached since he was a child. He is young, energetic, polite and immensely talented. He is no different to any other young GAA star from any other county. He has worked extremely hard but is also blessed with a prodigious and natural talent and should be celebrated and enjoyed for just that. At the other end of that spectrum in terms of career life is Bernard Brogan. Another prodigious talent – along with his brother Alan. The Brogans too were coached at underage and sometimes by their father – as thousands of children are. They are brilliantly talented and dedicated men. As are Johnny Cooper, Cian O’Sullivan and Ciarán Kilkenny.

Stephen Cluxton is the goalkeeper of a lifetime. A man who’s talent has simply changed the game forever. Hours of work on a training field, hours of kicking and hours of catching, with wonderful self belief and incredible natural talent. Diarmuid Connolly is one of the finest players to ever hold a hurl or put on a pair of boots – possibly the most natural and precocious of all.

There are many, many others. Supremely talented individuals with ferocious determination, will to win and unbreakable spirit. These men also happen to be among the most humble and everyday guys you will meet. They do good things – often – but without any fanfare. And funnily they probably care least about whether they are recognised or appreciated. They are matched with a management that is equally humble, magnanimous and damn it – decent. Maybe stop trying to undermine them and, like Dublin supporters, enjoy them for what they are, while they are among us. We may not see their like again for many years.


Your holiness aka yoda . He is truly wise.

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It’ll probably be ignored . Like everything else . Funny there was a comment about us mismanaging ourselves for a 100 years . The poster must have missed all the AIs we won previous to the last 5.

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Think any serious commentary ignores all that begrudging shite.

Ask yoda to tell you about the time he was playing in the full forward line and he was too busy eating a Mars bar with the opposition keeper to notice the ball had come in to him. Remember you are praising a guy who adds a poached egg to his coddle. Yoda is the poster known as your holiness on the Kerry forum ( just in case anyone was getting confused)

Excellent post!


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Maith an fear Dub09.

Possibly something to do with the 15 players to a team rule, I’d say.

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We’ll have none of that factual stuff here @BalletLlama … thank you very much …


Let it all out Dub09 and now breath. Great post agree 100%.

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For clarity It was a fun size mars bar .

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All of that on the money.But I have a long time ago given a flying what other people think of this team , financial doping , population etc, I have been watching Football long enough to see the evidence in front of me , this current team is in the top 2 teams ever to play the game .The more they hate us the better " there is one thing worse than been talked about is not been talked about "


Reputation completely destroyed in one fell swoop.


Excellent post in that kerry forum, but it is annoying that we’re still at this a year on.

we’ve done this to death here, but the reality is that like all political slogans the “financial doping” thing is quick to say and long to rebut, by which time people zone out.

then you have very selective statistiical extracts being presented as facts when dressed up in some fancy graphics, powerpoint graphs and how are ya.

someone summed it up to bitter on twitter “if you have a large hospital you need a large staff”

the population and economic inbalances in ireland are not the GAA’s fault, but unitl you have balanced regional economic develiopment that isnt going to change.

Ill reword this. Its ok when Dublin are not winning, everything else is acceptable.


if economic trends continue and the population shifts towards the east then there is more chance of carlow winning sam maguire later this century than mayo - providing they get their shit in order.

having a massive population advantage guarentees nothing - mayo have 1/10th of dublins population and are 1 point behind us in all irelands. that alone torpedoes all the stuff put up about us.

however, there is a complex population flow, as dublin becomes more expensive to bring up a family in, the more likely it is that young people who move from rural ireland to the city (not to mention young dublin people themselves) will raise their families outside of the county, so whilst we are getting the benefits now or soon will, that may only last ten years before other leinster counties start to seriosly catch up.

agains, and most importantly, if their CB’s get their act together.

We ahve always had a population advantage, the problem was that historically our CB never got beyond the whackers pet shop school of explioting it.


No doubt population and money is a factor…nobody can deny it. And that works not only in Dublin’s favour but in a comparison of say Mayo v Leitrim.

That said how do we (Mayo) compete with Dublin only loosing by a point a few times and the the draws…it’s also our best team since the 50’s arguably.

That said people forget Mayo have been challenging at a high level since 1989…:and we are the longest serving division 1 team since 1998…although not safe yet this year…all this on a population of 130,000 many of whom live beyond our borders.

So while Dublin have many advantages yer dominance won’t last forever and is hardly a dominance compared to Kilkenny just yet.