THE WAIT FOR Sam goes on for Mayo, then.
Dublin’s footballers will wake on Monday morning to realise they’re All-Ireland champions once again.
But for those in the Connacht champions’ camp it’s day one in another 365-day journey back to the September decider. If that winning feeling is familiar to the majority in the Dubs’ dressing-room, the experience of losing out at the last isn’t a strange one for the green-and-red.
Yesterday, despite steaming into an early lead they ultimately lost out by a point. Andy Moran told reporters afterwards of ‘tears in the dressing-room’; down the corridor, Jim Gavin folded away his moleskin notebook and got as worked up as he’s ever going to get.
Could this be the start of a golden age for the Dubs?
How the west was lost
James Horan was asked for his assessment of where Mayo let this one slip.
“We had enough ball to win the game, we just made too many basic mistakes,” Horan told RTÉ’s Joanne Cantwell.
“We turned over the ball too often, the ball wouldn’t stick inside for us and Dublin were launching counter attacks. That was basically it, nothing more. A few mistakes let us down and in the second half Dublin came with a surge and got ahead and we were chasing then.
“Our composure just left us a little bit but we kept plugging away and kept trying as hard as a we could. We just couldn’t get there.
Will he return next year? He says he’ll think about it.
Big players love the big stage. Yesterday, Bernard Brogan stood up and filled the role of the Dubs’ talisman. This is the first of his two goals — both scored with his hands, to prompt a Maradona reference from Colm O’Rourke.
They’re old college buddies but yesterday they were on opposing teams. Jonny Cooper took time out to console his former DCU team-mate, Robert Hennelly.
Pic: INPHO/Lorraine O’Sullivan
It’s still called a homecoming if the players can get the Luas to event, right?
Dublin fans will get the chance to congratulate their heroes on Monday evening. The newly-crowned All-Ireland champions will be hosted by the city’s Lord Mayor, Oisín Quinn at Merrion Square. Fans can access the square from 6pm, with the event throwing in at 7pm.
RTÉ’s Des Cahill will emcee the proceedings. Traffic restrictions will be in place from 6am on Merrion Square east and south, Mount Street Upper and Fitzwilliam Street Lower.
Mayo supporters too can welcome their beaten senior side and victorious minor outfit home today. The gates of MacHale Park open at 4pm; there will be a full programme of entertainment for the evening with live performances from local musicians.
It really sucked to be Darren Fletcher yesterday. The Manchester United midfielder — currently sidelined as he recovers from a chronic bowel illness — was at Croke Park to support the county of his mother, Mayo. But the Scotland international instead witnessed his side lose by a single point while his team-mates were hammered by Man City at the Etihad Stadium.
The world of Twitter was buzzing throughout the game and in the aftermath. Check out some of the twittering here.
Pic: Rónán Mistéil
This was the scene outside Mulligans on Dublin’s Poolbeg Street yesterday evening. Impressive.
This sign was hastily created and displayed in one Dublin shop. Well played, sir.
Every day I’m bookmaking
The turf accountants were quick off the mark on Sunday evening. They wasted no time in installing the Dubs as the 7/4 favourites to retain their title in 2014. Mayo are at 4-1 to at last break the losing record in finals next September.
- Deep into garbage time, needing a goal to end the famine, Cillian O’Connor kicked a point. What was he at? Perhaps a clue into his thinking lies in his furious reaction at the full-time whistle, suggesting referee Joe McQuillan had indicated he had more time that actually was afforded him afterwards.
- Cian O’Sullivan was the clear choice of our readers for man-of-the-match on Sunday night. The official Sunday Game award ultimately went to Bernard Brogan. Who would you have picked?
- Joe Brolly reflected on the RTÉ panel yesterday that a conversation had started this summer about the direction Gaelic games are going. Neither the Derry native, nor his colleagues, made mention of the cynical fouling the Dubs resorted to at the tail end of yesterday’s tie. Would he have kept his counsel if there was a red hand on those jerseys? Time constraints perhaps on a live broadcast; later on Twitter however, Brolly added “So much for Dublin’s ‘playing the game the right way’ philosophy. Their last quarter display was a master class in cynicism.”
Team of the year
The Sunday Game pundits have the thankless job of putting together the team of the year every September. This is the 2013 edition. What do you think?
Enda Kenny had to grin and bear the Dubs denying his home county that elusive victory yesterday. The game, you suspect, was somewhat more enjoyable for former Taoiseach, Bertie Ahern however.
Pic: INPHO/Morgan Treacy
Diarmuid Connolly really wanted to swap jerseys before the final whistle it seems.
It wasn’t all bad news for Mayo fans yesterday. The county’s minor stars beat Tyrone by a single goal — 2-13 to 1-13 – to end a 28-year wait for the title. Dave Kenny couldn’t contain himself afterwards, despite TV3′s family audience.
Pic: INPHO/Lorraine O’Sullivan
Dublin manager Jim Gavin with his children Yasmin and Jude Pic: INPHO/Donall Farmer
What a first year in the bainisteoir bib for Jim Gavin. The former Air Corp pilot never once betrayed his cool demeanour throughout the season. ‘Maybe that’s my training,’ he shrugged yesterday.
Forget Brolly’s rant, a Dublin-Kerry classic or today’s final; this football championship will be remembered as the year the Sunday Game panel brought their A-game in the fashion stakes. Last night, Eamon O’Hara went for a wine lapel and tie combo. Top marks.
Oh, just an super extra bonus All-Ireland hurling final. Cork and Clare couldn’t be separated after a thriller two weeks’ ago. They face off at HQ at the novel time of 5pm next Saturday. Who you got?
Then it’s the Ladies Football deciders less than 24 hours later. Cork and Monaghan are paired in the senior game.