Saturday 27 May 2017

Why are Cork's stars overlooked?

Martin Breheny

Martin Breheny

What do Cork footballers have to do to convince the wider public of their merit?

The defending All-Ireland champions are joint favourites with Kerry (11/4) for this year's title but, unusually for a team of such stature, have nobody in the top five in the betting for Footballer of the Year.

Colm Cooper (9/2), Bernard Brogan (13/2), Declan O'Sullivan, Paul Galvin (12/1 each) and Sean Cavanagh (14/1) lead the way, before Cork have a triple representation in Aidan Walsh, Paddy Kelly and Daniel Goulding, all on 16/1.

How can Cork, who have also won successive league titles, be so understated as individuals? It happened last year too, when despite winning the league-championship double, Cork had no representation on the All Star forward line and only four on the team.

The GPA selections righted the forward omission by selecting Goulding but chose only two other Corkmen, whereas Down, who won no titles, had five. As for Player of the Year, Bernard Brogan scooped all the awards, while Liam Sheedy beat Conor Counihan for Manager of the Year.

Counihan is relaxed about issues like these, knowing that history will define his squad purely by what they achieve on the pitch, but he must be wondering why his star names (and himself) continue to be ignored for individual honours.

He's not the only one either.

Irish Independent

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