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No parking, no showers... whole day a write-off

DUBLIN'S two-point defeat wasn't the only source of angst for the All-Ireland champs in Newry yesterday after they were left sitting outside Páirc Esler for over an hour after the match.

The Dublin team bus arrived in Newry to be informed by stewards that there was no designated parking spot inside the ground. After offloading the squad, the bus was forced to find alternative parking further down Warrenpoint Road behind thousands of match day visitors.

To make matters worse, the driver was then told he would not be permitted to bring the bus outside the ground before the final whistle and was left to crawl through traffic for an hour before picking up the disgruntled squad.

To compound their misery, the Dublin players arrived back into their dressing-room after the match to discover that there was no running water in the showers.


"Yes that did happen," confirmed Dublin chairman, Andy Kettle. "It's something that we will talk to the Down county board about. I don't think it would be any county's intention to do it deliberately. But you would think that there would be a better facility for the bus."

Meanwhile, Eoghan O'Gara will undergo a scan today on a mystery groin injury which prevented the in-form forward from travelling. The Templeogue /Synge Street man was named at full-forward but was forced to pull out on the eve of the match.

"Eoghan had a problem with his groin and just couldn't play," explained Pat Gilroy. "He's going to go to a specialist. He was just doing a warm-up and there was no way he could play so that disrupted things a bit. He'd been going very well."