Sunday 28 December 2014

Off The Ball: Scandal that Connolly didn't get an All Star

Colm Parkinson

Published 13/11/2013 | 01:00

Connolly: Deserved an All Star
Connolly: Deserved an All Star

The aftermath of the football All Stars was overshadowed by reports of players being left standing throughout the awards, which was totally unacceptable.

However, the big scandal of the night for me was how Diarmuid Connolly was omitted from the All Star team. We all know about his ability, his balance and his scoring threat off both feet, but what impressed me most this year was his work-rate – something that goes unnoticed.

He really is the complete player. He was man of the match in the classic All-Ireland semi-final against Kerry and was good right throughout the year.

The problem with Diarmuid – and, in my opinion, unfairly the reason he didn't get an All Star – is likeability. He gets sent off for silly, sometimes ugly, altercations (although not for Dublin this year, it should be noted) and can be a bully on the field.

The sight of him holding two Mayo players' jerseys at the same time as they struggled to free themselves in the final was great if you're a Dublin supporter but doesn't endear him to the neutrals.

Perhaps there is room for a PR guru in Dublin's extensive back-room team. They could take pictures of Diarmuid helping old ladies cross the street or rescuing lost puppies. Forget an All Star – he would be a shoo-in for Footballer of the Year next year.

Irish Independent

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