Tuesday 20 February 2018

The game at a glance

Man of the match

Kevin McManamon (Dublin)

He may have only been on for the final 19 minutes but he made a huge impact. His goal turned the game Dublin's way and his strong, direct running caused all sorts of problems for the Kerry defence, including forcing them into conceding the late free from which Stephen Cluxton kicked the winning point.

Turning point

McManamon's goal in the 63rd minute. The title seemed all wrapped up in Kerry colours as they led by four points but that goal reignited Dublin, who scorched their way to the finish line, adding three points to Kerry's one.

Talking point

The manner in which Dublin banished the haunting memory of so many disappointing days when they finished poorly, often squandering big leads. Yesterday, their last seven minutes were by far their best.

Ref watch

Joe McQuillan did a good job. Unusually for any game -- let alone an All-Ireland final -- there were no frees until the sixth minute. Seven players were booked but most were for clumsy tackles in a game which was played in a good spirit.

What they said

Pat Gilroy (Dublin Manager)

"We've done an awful lot of work on our mindset. We've got huge

benefit out of doing things a certain way. Some people who know a lot

about the mind have been really helpful, they've done exceptional

stuff with us, to be honest, and we'd be very grateful to them."

Jack O'Connor (Kerry manager):

"I'm not going to be hanging any guy out to dry, but of course the goal was a huge momentum changer

because we couldn't see Dublin getting it back on points. We were quite solid at the back, we had kept it tight at the back all day."

Match statistics

Wides: Dublin 9 (6); Kerry 8 (5)

Frees: Dublin 21 (11); Kerry 23 (13)

Yellow cards: Dublin 5 (P Flynn 12, R O'Carroll 23, G Brennan 44, K McManamon 56, C O'Sullivan 61); Kerry 2 (A O'Mahony 22, B Sheehan 39).

Red cards: Dublin 0; Kerry 0

Attendance: 82,300

What next?

Sam Maguire begins the celebration circuit in Dublin for the first time in 16 years; Kerry face a long winter wondering how they lost a game they appeared to have secured when they led by four points just past the hour mark.

Irish Independent

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