January blues

Basquel and O'Gara goals help Dublin's rookie side claim impressive O'Byrne Cup final win over Louth

Stand in manager Paul Clarke saw his team win by nine points in Drogheda.

Dublin 2-16
Louth 1-10

Paul Keane reports from Gaelic Grounds, Drogheda

PAUL CLARKE’S DEVELOPMENT panel streaked to Bord na Mona O’Byrne Cup title success in Drogheda, making an ominous statement about the depth of football talent within Dublin.

Killian O'Gara scores their second goal Killian O'Gara, younger brother of Eoghan, bagged Dublin's second goal of the game. Ryan Byrne / INPHO Ryan Byrne / INPHO / INPHO

Clarke signed off on his stint as temporary manager of the back to back All-Ireland champions by guiding his rookie team, none of whom played in last year’s Championship, to a ninth title for the county.

Colm Basquel and Killian O’Gara set the seal on a deserved win with late goals while Paul Hudson top scored with six points, taking his January takings to a tidy 1-24.

There was a strong showing too from Ciaran Reddin, the team captain, who lifted the cup after scoring three points and will hope to remain on the panel for the Allianz league.

Ronan Holcroft and Shane Boland Louth's Ronan Holcroft and Shane Boland of Dublin in action in Drogheda. Ryan Byrne / INPHO Ryan Byrne / INPHO / INPHO

Clarke’s task now will be to meet up with regular boss Jim Gavin and hand him a list of names whom he feels should stick around.

Reddin and Hudson have featured prominently throughout January while Basquel, an AIB All-Ireland club medal winner last year, is an obvious talent too.

Niall Scully is arguably the pick of Clarke’s crew though, capping a fine tournament with a man-of-the-match display in front of around 3,500 at the Louth venue.

Ciaran Reddin lifts The Bord na Mona O'Byrne Cup Dublin captain Ciaran Reddin lifts the O'Byrne Cup. Ryan Byrne / INPHO Ryan Byrne / INPHO / INPHO

Dublin did start slowly and trailed by two points with 23 minutes on the clock, 0-5 to 0-3, as Louth funnelled men back and hit the Sky Blues on the break.

Louth also wasted three goal opportunities in the first-half with Jim McEneaney and Tommy Durnin both failing to make the favourites pay.

Dublin found their range with three points in a row to close out the first-half and took a slender 0-6 to 0-5 lead.

They followed up with seven more points in a row, holding Louth scoreless between the 23rd and 55th minutes, to set the seal on victory.

Paul Hudson with fans after the game Paul Hudson with Dublin fans after the game Ryan Byrne / INPHO Ryan Byrne / INPHO / INPHO

Pauric Smith was best for Louth with five points overall while sub Sam Mulroy curled over a couple of frees after coming on.

But Dublin, who used 29 different players in the competition, finished strong and Basquel’s 66th minute goal was a beauty as he dummied the ‘keeper and tapped in.

O’Gara added a second goal at the death, gaining advantage from the referee after being fouled and bundling the ball home. Emmet O Conghaile was red carded for Dublin in injury-time after picking up his second yellow card.

Louth will attempt to pick themselves up for next Saturday’s trip to face Laois in Division 3 of the Allianz league.

Patrick Reilly and Conor McHugh Louth and Dublin players clash in the battle for possession. Ryan Byrne / INPHO Ryan Byrne / INPHO / INPHO

Scorers for Dublin: P Hudson 0-6 (0-3f), C Basquel 1-1, K O’Gara 1-0, C Reddin 0-3 (0-1 45), C McHugh, J Whelan, S Cunningham, N Scully, R Hazley, R O’Brien 0-1 each.

Scorers for Louth: P Smith 0-5, P Rath 1-0, R Holcroft, S Mulroy (0-2f) 0-2 each, B Duffy 0-1.


1. Evan Comerford (Ballymun Kickhams)

4. Ross McGowan (Kilmacud Crokes)
3. Eoin O’Brien (Castleknock)
2. Jack Smith (Skerries Harps)

7. Robbie Gaughan (Ballinteer St John’s)
6. Ciaran Reddin (St Maur’s)
18. Conor Mullally (Cuala)

8. Jason Whelan (Ballymun Kickhams)
10. Ross Hazley (St Sylvester’s)

5. Niall Scully (Templeogue Synge-Street)
11. Shane Boland (Castleknock)
12. Niall Walsh (St Oliver Plunkett’s-Eoghan Ruadh)

15. Conor McHugh (Na Fianna)
27. Shane Cunningham (Kilmacud Crokes)
13. Paul Hudson (Thomas Davis)


29. Emmet O Conghaile (Lucan Sarsfields) for Hazley (h/t)
20. Colm Basquel (Ballyboden St-Enda’s) for Boland (h/t)
19. Tom Shiels (Castleknock) for Mullally (40)
24. Gary Sweeney (St Sylvester’s) for Walsh (51)
28. Killian O’Gara (Templeogue Synge-Street) for Cunningham (54)
22. Sean Newcombe (Lucan Sarsfields) for Whelan (63)
23. Ross O’Brien (St Judes) for McHugh (67)


1. Craig Lynch (St Martin’s)

2. Padraig Rath (Dreadnots)
3. Patrick Reilly (St Bride’s)
4. Kevin Carr (Newtown Blues)

5. Derek Maguire (Dundalk Young Ireland’s)
6. Darren McMahon (St Mochta’s)
7. Anthony Williams (Dreadnots)

8. Tommy Durnin (Westerns)
9. Andy McDonnell (Newtown Blues)

10. James Stewart (Dundalk Gaels)
11. Pauric Smith (Dreadnots)
12. Bevan Duffy (St Fechin’s)

13. Conal McKeever (Clan Na Gael)
14. Jim McEneaney (Geraldines)
21. Ronan Holcroft (St Fechin’s)


20. Adrian Reid (Mattock Rangers) for McKeever (39)
15. Ryan Burns (Hunterstown Rovers) for McEneaney (39)
26. Declan Byrne (St Mochta’s) for McMahon (41)
24. Eoin O’Connor (St Patrick’s) for Durnin (48)
25. Sam Mulroy (Naomh Martin) for Holcroft (51)
19. Ruairi Moore (O’Raghallaigh’s) for McDonnell (66)
22. Ross Nally (Newtown Blues) for Smith (67)
Derek Maguire, black card (76 – not replaced)

Referee: John Hickey (Carlow).

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