Monday 19 March 2018

Eugene McGee: Superior firepower puts rebels on the front foot

Eugene McGee

Eugene McGee

Despite the huge margin of victory for Cork in the Munster final, there was probably a lot of admiration among neutrals for the display of the Clare footballers yesterday. They were, after all, 22/1 outsiders to win yet throughout the entire game they kept their heads up and at the end had scored 13 points against the All-Ireland favourites.

Of course Cork were deserving winners because they were able to manufacture and score the three killer goals that ensured their passage to the All-Ireland quarter-finals with ease. Sometimes outsiders throw caution to the wind and go for bust, which is what Clare did most of the time, but when you concede three goals in the first half of a big championship game, your goose is cooked.

Of course that should be two goals. Because if the third one, when Nicholas Murphy tipped the ball into the net, was not already over the line it was illegal -- due to the square-ball rule -- but that is of little consolation for Clare. It is truly amazing that what would appear to be simple rules of play in Gaelic football couldn't be enforced properly by the combined efforts of seven match officials.

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