Thursday 21 September 2017

Who just missed out?

Jimmy Keaveney
Jimmy Keaveney

Jimmy Keaveney was central to Kevin Heffernan's Dublin revival. Of course, that was the big full-forward's second coming.

The St Vincent's man made his inter-county debut in 1964 (he also played hurling for Dublin in the mid 60s) but having prematurely retired in 1972, Heffernan was coaxed back and it's a decision he could never regret, winning three All-Irelands in 1974, 76 and 77. The latter was earned with victory over Armagh, when Keaveney scored 2-6 of his side's 5-12 total.

Matt Connor
Matt Connor

Matt Connor was a football genius. In 1980 he set a record in Gaelic football, with 201 points in 29 games.

In his book, The Gaa In My Time, Eugene McGee wrote: "My abiding memories of Matt Connor come not from Croke Park or other big stadiums but from training sessions. Matt was always serious about training, as were all the lads and the training games were often barbaric in intensity. Every player wanted to outdo Matt if he got the chance, but rarely did that happen."

Before Martin O'Neill, the football manager making the most of what he had, there was Martin O'Neill the footballer, making the most of what he had.

In doing so he was master of all he surveyed at Nottingham Forest, winning two European Cups, a European Super Cup, the old First Division Championship, two League Cups and a Charity Shield. Oh, and he captained Northern Ireland at the 1982 World Cup.

Martin O'Neill
Martin O'Neill

Sunday Independent

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