Thursday 14 December 2017

'All of a sudden people were saying Kildare could beat Dublin... It was strange to me' - Alan Brogan on Leinster final

Former Dublin footballer Alan Brogan speaking at the GAA Healthy Club Roadshow - Leinster. Photo by Piaras Ó Mídheach/Sportsfile
Former Dublin footballer Alan Brogan speaking at the GAA Healthy Club Roadshow - Leinster. Photo by Piaras Ó Mídheach/Sportsfile

Conor Neville

The slickness with which Kildare demolished Meath a fortnight ago gave neutrals hope that we might witness a competitive Leinster football final.

The notion was further bolstered by Dublin's stumbles in the National League this spring, and their unimpressive win against Carlow in Portlaoise.

This talk has, of course, gone quiet since Sunday.

But Ciaran Whelan and Alan Brogan thought the notion that Kildare could topple Dublin had little basis to begin with.

Speaking on the Throw-In, Whelan argued that their eye-catching destruction of Meath had more to do with the inadequacy of the losers than Kildare's burgeoning brilliance.

"Kildare were very impressive against Meath and they're being hyped up a lot," said Whelan.

"But how poor were Meath? The Meath defence was very poor on the day. They were five yards off, there was no pressure on the ball coming out the field. Meath let Kildare look good.

"And coming into Croke Park will be a critical factor for Kildare. Galway beat them (in Div. 2 final), Westmeath beat them last year, Dublin have given them a few hammerings over the last few years. Croke Park hasn't been a nice place for Kildare.

"It's going to be a crucial first 15 or 20 minutes. They're going to have to stop Dublin getting into their flow."

Brogan argues that Dublin's performance yesterday might actually benefit Kildare as it will reduce the levels of expectation surrounding them.

"Three weeks ago, Kildare beat a Meath team who didn't perform on the day. And all of a sudden we're talking about how Kildare are the team that might beat Dublin. It's kind of come from nowhere in my view.

"I was looking at social media and every third tweet was about how Kildare are back and they're going to compete with Dublin. It was strange to me. But now all that pressure is off Kildare and they can just go out and have a rattle off Dublin."

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