Monday 26 September 2016

Joyous scenes as thousands welcome Sam Maguire home to Dublin 'after short holiday in Kerry'

Robin Schiller

Published 21/09/2015 | 21:56

21 September 2015; Dublin's Dean Rock singing on stage during the team homecoming. O'Connell St, Dublin. Picture credit: Paul Mohan / SPORTSFILE
21 September 2015; Dublin's Dean Rock singing on stage during the team homecoming. O'Connell St, Dublin. Picture credit: Paul Mohan / SPORTSFILE
21 September 2015; A general view of the crowd during the team homecoming. O'Connell St, Dublin. Picture credit: Paul Mohan / SPORTSFILE
21 September 2015; A general view of the crowd during the team homecoming. O'Connell St, Dublin. Picture credit: Paul Mohan / SPORTSFILE
21 September 2015; A general view of the crowd during the team homecoming. O'Connell St, Dublin. Picture credit: Paul Mohan / SPORTSFILE
21 September 2015; A general view of the crowd during the team homecoming. O'Connell St, Dublin. Picture credit: Paul Mohan / SPORTSFILE
21 September 2015; Dublin's Stephen Cluxton lifts the Sam Maguire cup on stage during the team homecoming. O'Connell St, Dublin. Picture credit: Paul Mohan / SPORTSFILE
21 September 2015; Dublin's Alan Brogan on stage during the team homecoming. O'Connell St, Dublin. Picture credit: Paul Mohan / SPORTSFILE
21 September 2015; Dublin's Paul Flynn waves to the crowd during the team homecoming. O'Connell St, Dublin. Picture credit: Paul Mohan / SPORTSFILE
21 September 2015; Dublin's Alan Brogan on stage during the team homecoming. O'Connell St, Dublin. Picture credit: Paul Mohan / SPORTSFILE
21 September 2015; Dublin manager Jim Gavin, centre right, speaking with Des Cahill during the team homecoming. O'Connell St, Dublin. Picture credit: Paul Mohan / SPORTSFILE
21 September 2015; Dublin's Alan Brogan celebrates on stage with the Sam Maguire cup during the team homecoming. O'Connell St, Dublin. Picture credit: Paul Mohan / SPORTSFILE
21 September 2015; Dublin's Cian O'Sullivan puts the Sam Maguire cup back on the bus after the team homecoming. O'Connell St, Dublin. Picture credit: Paul Mohan / SPORTSFILE
21 September 2015; Dublin's Cian O'Sullivan puts the Sam Maguire cup back on the bus after the team homecoming. O'Connell St, Dublin. Picture credit: Paul Mohan / SPORTSFILE
21 September 2015; Dublin's Cormac Costello dances on stage with Ann Grimes, from Dublin, during the team homecoming. O'Connell St, Dublin. Picture credit: Paul Mohan / SPORTSFILE
21 September 2015; Dublin's Kevin McManamon dances on stage with Ann Grimes, from Dublin, during the team homecoming. O'Connell St, Dublin. Picture credit: Paul Mohan / SPORTSFILE
21 September 2015; Dublin's Denis Bastick holds the Sam Maguire cup aloft under the Spire of Dublin during the team homecoming. O'Connell St, Dublin. Picture credit: Paul Mohan / SPORTSFILE

Thousands of loyal supporters crowded onto Dublin’s O’Connell Street to welcome the 2015 All-Ireland winning team home as players Dean Rock and Kevin McManamon performed for the crowd.

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It is the first time the Sam Maguire trophy has been paraded on the north side this Millennium, with the 2011 and 2013 homecomings being held on Merrion Square

“The Sam Maguire is home after a short holiday in Kerry,” MC Des Cahill proclaimed, as the Dublin team arrived shortly after 7.30pm last night to a deafening cheer from their fans.

The backroom staff of physiotherapists and doctors were introduced to the crowd as well as former player Jason Sherlock, who now works with the panel’s forward line.

“It’s taken me 20 years to get onto this stage, but it’s great to see the consistency in guys who love playing for Dublin and the supporters,” Sherlock said.

Corner-back Philly McMahon joked that he was “the sober one looking after all the lads”, while thanking the supporters for their “amazing” support during the year.

Throughout the homecoming event the supporters, in good spirits for the evening broke into song, with “Champiole” and “Come on you Boys in Blue” the pick of the bunch.

Dublin forward Dean Rock was chosen to perform a song, and belted out ‘500 Miles’ by The Proclaimers to the delight of the crowd, albeit with a somewhat hoarse voice.

The stalwart music performer of the team Kevin McManamon was up next, and delivered a superb version of Van Morrison’s ‘Brown Eyed Girl’, with the help of Ann Grimes, who became a viral hit with her “Ah Here. Leave it Out” video.

Sunday’s Man of the Match Brian Fenton described how he was “living the dream”, while Alan Brogan reacted to the crowd’s chants of “one more year” by replying “I’ll enjoy this win for now”.

Manager Jim Gavin thanked the Dublin fans for their continued support during the season, describing the noise from the hill during the final as “electrifying”.

“We had extraordinary support all season from the first game, to the away days in Cork, and it peaked during the replay (against Mayo).

“The boys certainly felt the electricity coming from the hill, and it certainly spurred us on,” Gavin said.

Paul Flynn rounded off the homecoming celebrations, saying it was a “special occasion”.

“Listen any time we bring Sam back it’s fantastic, and this year to bring it back to O’Connell Street is a special occasion, and for all you people to come out here in numbers on a Monday evening is brilliant. So thanks for the support, and let’s win it again next year,” Flynn said.

The team along with the Sam Maguire trophy then made its way to Coolock, the home of captain Stephen Cluxton’s club Parnell’s, where the celebrations continued.

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