Wednesday 28 September 2016

Colm Parkinson: Faking injury can burst Dubs' bubble

Opponents will suffer unless they quell Croker crowd after Sky Blue goals

Colm Parkinson

Published 09/09/2015 | 02:30

Dublin feed off the euphoria that their goals spark at Croke Park
Dublin feed off the euphoria that their goals spark at Croke Park

The Dubs answered a lot of questions on Saturday and now find themselves favourites to win the All-Ireland title. They looked in serious trouble with 15 minutes left, but once they got their first goal there was no looking back.

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I can't stress enough how important it is to not concede goals against Dublin in Croker. I've been on the receiving end, and the stadium really comes alive. It's difficult not to drop your head and wait for the inevitable onslaught.

When Laois played Dublin in the 2007 Leinster final, we conceded a goal just before half-time. Then another came inside a minute.

I felt Mayo's pain. We went from a four-point lead to a three-point deficit at half-time.

Goals give the Dubs oxygen. If they do score a goal it's vital that some player goes down injured until the euphoria sweeping around the stadium dies down.

What Kerry don't want to do is play a roving corner-forward and invite Philly McMahon out the field. McMahon plays midfield for Ballymun and fancies himself as a forward. He was the perfect man to follow Aidan O'Shea.

When Dublin play defensive teams, he is asked to follow his man out the field, and more often than not is more effective out there than his marker. He's a real all-rounder.

Credit

Bernard Brogan isn't getting the credit he deserves. He was brilliant on Saturday. He has so much more to his game now, he's not just a scorer any more.

When Paddy Andrews is on song he is unmarkable, he's just so accurate. It's hard to believe he played corner-back for Dublin as recently as 2009.

James McCarthy and Jack McCaffrey are on song too and Cian O'Sullivan is just the perfect centre-back to hold the middle.

Mayo played a sweeper, though, and gave him a free role. Kerry won't do that. They will push up on kickouts and give every Dublin defender a job.

McMahon won't be scoring against Kerry either, he'll be in the full-back line with a big marking job on his hands.

The best change Jim Gavin made during the game was to take Johnny Cooper off. He wasn't playing badly but Andy Moran was brought on and set up the Mayo goal. Moran is lively and had fresh legs so Gavin brought Michael Fitzsimons on to mark him. That's good management.

Two years ago Kerry and Dublin served up an all-time classic; I can't see any reason we won't get more of the same this time around.

Irish Independent

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