Saturday 18 November 2017

Where are they now? John Tobin, former Galway footballer

Tuam Stars won the Galway county football championship in 1984 with John Tobin as captain and he counts the occasion as one of his most memorable sporting moments.

It's been 17 years since Tobin's club were in a county final and even longer since they dominated the Galway championship but today they are back in the final and Tobin believes that they can relive the glory days.

"It's going to be an epic clash between ourselves and our local rivals Corofin," he explains. "We are neighbouring parishes and two very established and traditional clubs. Corofin are odds-on favourites but you always think your own crowd will win."

As well as having a successful career with Tuam Stars, Tobin was one of the most skilful footballers ever to wear a Galway jersey. He won a minor All-Ireland with the Tribesmen in 1970 and an under 21 All-Ireland in 1972 and, in between those two victories, he joined the senior squad.

Although he had success at underage level in the maroon and white, it didn't translate to senior. In the early 1970s, Galway lost finals to Offaly, Cork and Dublin and it was the end of Tobin's career before they got back to the decider again.

"The last game I played was the 1983 All-Ireland final, I came on as a sub. It was very disappointing as it was a game we could have won. But Dublin showed fantastic resolve on the day having 12 players against 14."

Tobin went into management after retiring from inter-county football; he spent time at the helm of the Galway and Roscommon footballers and his own club, Tuam Stars.

He knows from experience the pressure that goes with the role and doesn't agree with the concept of the manager. Tobin feels the most important person involved with any team is the coach and that the manager should be mainly the logistics man.

Tobin also believes that Alan Mulholland is the ideal man to lead his county's team and that the future is bright for Galway football because of the young crop of players coming through.

The former PE teacher is now the provincial coaching and games manager for Connacht GAA. He is also a coaching officer in his own club will be in Tuam today, hoping his side can once again be county champions.

Sunday Indo Sport

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