Thursday 22 February 2018

Brogans set to come off bench

ALL-IRELAND champions Dublin will wheel out their big attacking guns in Castlebar tonight in a bid to avoid losing their opening two games of the Allianz League, WRITES CLIONA FOLEY.

Reigning Footballer of the Year Alan Brogan, and his 2010 predecessor and brother Bernard, were not named in Dublin's starting 15, but both are expected to make their first appearances of the year off the bench.

Both took extended breaks over the winter -- Bernard did some travelling abroad -- and their earlier than expected return indicates that the Dubs, who lost to Kerry last week, mean business.

"Alan and Bernard are after putting in an extra week's training and have done a bit more than everyone else (this week)," manager Pat Gilroy said. "They're coming along very well and will be ready to play this weekend."

The Blues boss has also given the thumbs up to Mayo's decision to bring the game forward to a 6.30 throw-in in order to avoid a direct clash with Ireland's Six Nations game against France.

"It makes an awful lot of sense," Gilroy said. "People tend to be sports fans, rather than just being a Gaelic or soccer fan.

"Trying to go head-to-head doesn't make sense for anyone, you're just splitting the potential audience.

"This is a practical approach and I think it's good that people will be able to watch the rugby as well as our match."

Irish Independent

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