Andy Moran has his say on Lee Keegan GPS incident and Dublin's injury-time cynicism
ANDY Moran’s assessment of the cynicism that pock-marked the end of last Sunday week’s All-Ireland final is roughly in keeping with the sentiments of his fellow participants.
Damned if they did and damned if they didn’t.
In the days after last Sunday week’s breathless final, footage emerged of Lee Keegan throwing a GPS pack at Dean Rock as he kicked the deciding free, Cormac Costello discarding David Clarke’s kicking tees and several Dublin players dragging their markers to the ground as the Mayo ’keeper attempted to take his final, fateful kick-out.
“We’d get criticised if we did and criticised if we didn’t,” shrugged Moran, who stressed his belief that Dublin were “great champions,” after completing a historic three
in-a-row of All-Ireland SFC titles that day.
“It wouldn’t really faze me either way,” he said when quizzed about Dublin’s injury-time tactics.
“Would we have done the same thing? To answer the question, I would be hoping we would be clinical enough to close out the game. Would we have done the same thing? I’m not sure.
“But we’d be hoping we would be clinical enough to close out the game before we were in that position.”
Asked specifically about Keegan’s apparent use of a GPS unit as a tool of distraction on match-winner Rock, Moran replied: “It is what it is. It’s not really a big deal for me. Dean kicks the free.”
Moran also confirmed that he had suffered a hamstring injury in the build-up to Jason Doherty’s second-half goal chance and his 62nd minute substitution was as a direct result of his knock.
“I’d never hurt my hamstring before,” he explained, “so I didn’t realise what I’d done.
“So I told them at that stage to give me five or ten minutes. I could have played on but it was probably the right decision to take me off at that stage.
“We were going to (try and) win the game. And Conor (Loftus) had given us great service that year.
“So it was the right decision to bring him off the bench at that stage.”
Moran and Colm Boyle were both substituted in almost every one of Mayo’s epic 10-game All-Ireland SFC run.
Both are expected to receive All Stars in November while Moran has been nominated for Footballer of the Year, leading to comments that management were relying on GPS data to decide when to take them off rather than how either were playing.
“If we keep playing the fellas over 30 years if age, when do these young fellas get a chance?
“The one thing Conor Loftus has proven more than anyone this year is when he comes on, he does a great job.
“We nearly have a little plan, if he comes on and I’m still on the pitch, what we do.
“I think you have to look after the talent coming behind you.”
Moran also described the reaction of Roscommon fans who booed him after he was taken off in the drawn All-Ireland quarter-final as “just a bi of craic,” and said he was almost certain than all of this year’s squad and their management team would be available again next year.
“I think it’s changed an awful lot. Now, you go and do your training. We’ll have to keep ourselves in shape right until the first of January.
“It’s not going to be flat-out training, it’s going to be nice and easy. It has really changed from that thing of saying ‘oh it’s a big push’.
“There are way more benefits in playing GAA now and stuff like that. In my view, if anyone retires I’d be surprised.”