We'll sink Rebels for Alan - Brogan
Dublin's first league final since 1999 won't be quite the family affair it could have been.
Alan Brogan went from scoring the goal that put the Dubs into the decider to picking up a red card in another game, that was essentially meaningless for Pat Gilroy's side, and with no video evidence available to exonerate the two-time All Star, Paul and Bernard Brogan will be left to fly the family flag.
The eldest brother scored the injury- time goal against Down on the night there was a minute's silence for their grandfather Jim Brogan at Croke Park. The move for the decisive score, watched by the grieving extended family, also involved Paul and Bernard.
"I know a lot of people say the GAA don't do many things right but for the Brogans, they did a huge service to us," Bernard said. "Croke Park put up a box for the family and we had all the relations and the cousins up.
"We had the minute silence for my grandad. Then I came on and the three of us were involved in the goal.
"For my dad and his brothers, they were saying it was a hugely emotional time for them. To be involved in the winning of the game was huge. You couldn't have written a better script."
However, the script took a turn for the worse eight days later when Alan was shown a red card against Galway, meaning he will miss out against Cork.
"He's hugely disappointed," Bernard said yesterday at the launch of Xbox Kinect. "The whole family is. It was a bit of a nothing incident. He's been waiting 10 years to play in a league final. Hopefully, we can go out there and bring it back for him.
"As everybody knows, his discipline record is immaculate. It's hugely disappointing. We were already in the final."
Whether both of the available Brogans will make the starting line-up for the clash with Cork at Croke Park is up for debate. Bernard is one of the few certainties in Gilroy's side and Paul has impressed in both his starts against Down and Galway.
One Dublin star who is available for the final is Eoghan O'Gara, who will return from suspension in time to be included in the squad, while Eamon Fennell is edging back to fitness and played his first game for his new club St Vincent's last weekend, adding to Gilroy's already impressive array of options.
"I probably couldn't pick the starting 15 that he would pick," Bernard said. "We have been winning games and he has been changing men. You want to have two lads in every position. The lads who have come off the bench have made a huge difference."
Dublin hit three goals in their six- point success over the Rebels in February but Brogan points out that Cork weren't long back from a team holiday at that stage and he is expecting a different team this time around.
"It will be a different team than the one we faced earlier in the year. They're moving well. I know they had a bit of an upset against Mayo but they put up some good performances over the last couple of games. It will be a big battle and it will be a huge crowd in Croker for it. It'll be Championshipesque."