Monday 22 July 2019

John Bailey - a man who spoke his mind on behalf of Dublin

Recent suggestions that Dublin should have two football teams would have horrified Bailey. Photo: Tom Burke
Recent suggestions that Dublin should have two football teams would have horrified Bailey. Photo: Tom Burke

Independent.ie Sportsdesk

Loyalty to the blue of Dublin was everything to John Bailey, former county board chairman, who has died, aged 74.

It was his guiding principle and while he could never be described as diplomatic, he was respected for the passion he brought to his endeavours on behalf of his beloved Dublin and Cuala.

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Recent suggestions that Dublin should have two football teams would have horrified Bailey, just as they did in 2002 when the GAA's Strategic Review Committee recommended a division between north and south Dublin.

"Over my dead body" and "this has to be the craziest plan ever" were among his many colourful responses to a proposal which never got any traction.

Bailey, who refereed the Cork-Galway All-Ireland hurling final in 1986, drove many initiatives during his term as chairman, including redevelopment of Parnell Park and various plans to advance Dublin hurling and football.

At one stage he even tried to recruit Mick O'Dwyer as senior football manager.

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