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Blues must avoid poor start in final says Cooper

DUBLIN footballers have made it their mission to avoid another sleepwalking start in tomorrow's Allianz Football League final against Derry in Croke Park (throw-in 4.0).

The All-Ireland champions had to call on all of their never-say-die qualities at the semi-final stage, producing a spectacular 17-point turnaround to win by seven.

But there's a lesson there for Dublin, according to defender Jonny Cooper (left).

"Well, I don't think we'd be happy with the way in which we're starting games," the Na Fianna man admitted.

"Particularly a couple of games, going behind and letting teams take a lead and take the advantage. That's certainly not what we're looking to do.

"But we have our processes in place, in terms of the way we warm up and the way we try and start a game."

Against Cork, the Division 1 holders leaked two avoidable goals inside seven minutes, were nine points down after just 13 minutes and were playing 10-point catch-up soon after the break. "As a defensive unit, we wouldn't be happy with the scores that we conceded, the goals in particular," Cooper outlined.

"People look in and say, 'Ah, they wouldn't come back from seven, eight, nine, 10 points down' ... within the team there is that hunger and belief that, okay, you mightn't come back from 10 points all the time, but there's certainly a strong will there for guys to keep pushing to the end. And then we have the subs that will, and generally have, come in and made the impact for us."