Saturday 17 February 2018

Martin Breheny: Goulding's 2010 All Star snub one of the worst ever - his retirement is a setback for creativity

Daniel Goulding: 'difficult role'
Daniel Goulding: 'difficult role'
Martin Breheny

Martin Breheny

Daniel Goulding's remarks as he signed off on his inter-county career at the age of 30 are interesting for reasons that aren't exactly an endorsement of modern-day Gaelic football.

"I'm not getting as much enjoyment out of it as I did before. I was best suited to a corner-forward position and that role got more difficult to play over the years," he said.

Can we take it that by getting 'more difficult' he was referring to corner-forwards having to scramble back into their own half to play as defenders, a role totally unsuited to the more creative of the attacking species? Grim zealots who regard 'turnovers', 'plays', kick-outs, possession stats etc as the only real latest gospel, will, no doubt, claim that the comments are those of a player who can't hack it in the new age.

In reality, his assessment is that of a skilful, thoughtful player, for whom creativity always outweighed the dreary sense of functionality which has become so embedded in the game. Goulding finishes his Cork career with All-Ireland, Munster and NFL medals, plus one All-Star award won in 2009. He should have had a second one a year later after Cork won the All-Ireland but controversially lost out.

Never before or since in the 45-year history of the scheme did All-Ireland winners have no representative in the forward line. Goulding was Cork's stand-out candidate in 2010 but missed out in an attack that featured three Down men. His omission may not have been the biggest All-Star sin but it still comes under the grievous fault heading.

Irish Independent

Promoted Links

Sport Newsletter

The best sport action straight to your inbox every morning.

Promoted Links

Editor's Choice

Also in Sport