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Dublin: 3°C Sunday 28 February 2021

The absolutely essential phrases that powered sport in 2016

Sure we might have said nothing at all if it wasn’t for the O’Donovans.

“Will Grigg’s on fire”

It was the sound of the summer. The whole world knew the name of Northern Ireland’s third-choice striker, even if he rarely made it out of a warm-up bib at the Euros.

Griggs was always synonymous with the 90s hit despite fans of every single club and coutnry appropriating the tune to suit one of their own.

Source: Crystal Ball Warhol/YouTube

“Close the eyes and pull like a dog.”

giphy (2)

The O’Donovan brothers chatted their way into the nation’s hearts while making waves in Rio. One interview stood above all the others. It featured this bit of tactical insight from Paul O’Donovan.

And this review of the Olympic village canteen from Gary O’Donovan.

  ”The food’s fantastic. You could have schteak for breakfast, lunch and dinner with schpuds if you like.”

Source: RambleMouse/YouTube

“This weekend is a celebration”

Pat Lam’s pre-Pro12 Grand Final message was prophetic, but it carried no pressure for his team and the celebratory mood clearly translated onto the rugby field in Edinburgh.

Pat Lam speaks to his team Source: James Crombie/INPHO

“I’m not surprised, motherfuckers’

UFC 196 Mixed Martial Arts Source: AP/Press Association Images

 “Up the Ruairis”

Where would we be without celebrity endorsements for small club teams. Long before the Ireland 2023 committee got Liam Neeson to do a threatening voiceover, Cushendall were all over him.

Source: alex brain/YouTube

“Who the fuck is that guy?!”

Conor McGregor’s comic timing made this simple interjection look utterly withering, especially when Jeremy Stephens could only offer a starstuck gawk when McGregor turned around to see where the voice was coming from.

Source: TheUploader/YouTube

“Do your homework”

Not just the words of parents trying to watch Westworld in peace, but also the 2016 reboot of Roy Keane’s fail to prepare, prepare to fail.

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He wasn’t letting TV3′s Paul Walsh off the hook lightly when he dared suggest big Ron Koeman might let James McCarthy leave Everton.

Source: 90thmin Football/YouTube

“Sitting in a car on the way to some dump in Connecticut or somewhere, to speak to Tim and Suzie on the nobody gives a fuck morning show did not get me this life.”

That man again.

Conor McGregor during the post fight press conference Source: Tom Hogan/INPHO

“Glastonbury’s about more than just Beyonce”

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True, it’s about mud and madness and Phil Jupitus on BBC 2, but an October event in Dublin really was all about Lance Armstrong. Even if organiser Richard Barrett said otherwise in a tetchy interview with Off The Ball after the disgraced cyclist dropped out.

“Glastonbury is about more than Beyonce, the One-Zero Conference is about more than Lance Armstrong. There are no refunds. This conference is bigger than Lance.”

“Dilly-ding, dilly-dong”

Claudio Ranieri brought onomatopoeia to the very top of the Premier League.

dddd Source:

“Was that not the chance? That is the chance…”

RTE commentators were in forlorn mood while Wes Hoolahan was making up for his miss against Italy with a sublime ball in to Robbie Brady.


“I’d like to apologise… TO ABSOLUTELY NOBODY!”

UFC 205 Mixed Martial Arts Source: Julio Cortez

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About the author:

Sean Farrell

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