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Brian Fenton on Jack O’Shea text following Gaelic Footballer of the Year award

fenton o'shea

“That was a lovely, lovely moment last night.”

Brian Fenton became the first man since Trevor Giles to win a second PwC GAA/GPA Footballer of the Year award but one congratulatory text from Kerry legend Jack O’Shea caught his eye.

Fenton beat Dublin teammate Ciaran Kilkenny and Mayo corner-forward Cillian O’Connor who were both nominated alongside the Dublin midfielder.

jack o'shea

Jack O’Shea

Many people have compared the two great midfielders and the 27-year-old was over the moon to get a text from the seven-time All-Ireland winner.

“I got a message last night from Jack O’Shea,” Fenton told the media after winning his award.

“He got my number off someone I knew as well. That came in – your phone is blowing up with WhatsApps and tweets – but I came across his and that was a lovely moment and I text him back.

“I obviously never saw him play but he’s always regarded as the gold standard, and something that you’re always trying to achieve. So that was a lovely, lovely moment last night.”

PwC GAA/GPA Footballer of the Year, Brian Fenton (Dublin) with his award in RTÉ.

Brian Fenton

Fenton was asked how his dad – a Kerry man – reacted when he heard O’Shea had sent on his congratulations.  

“Yeah. I was sort of in shock. I just showed him and he was amazed,” Fenton replied.

“He was trying to get the connection. Again, you don’t get too much from him but I sent him a screenshot of it today so we both have it.

“I remember I was at a Kerry game when I was 12 or 13 and we were sitting a couple of rows back in the Hogan Stand. Jacko, I didn’t know him I was a child, and he was walking up the sideline to do some punditry.

brian fenton

“There was a bit of cheering from the crowd and my dad stood up and roared, ‘Go on Jacko.’

“He wouldn’t [usually] be massively cheering or anything like that but with that reaction I was like, ‘Jesus, this fella must have been good.’

“So it obviously meant a lot to the family. For people like that to reach out to you it’s very kind.

“I said to my sister sitting beside me, remind me to do that in 30 or 40 years’ time to text that player. It’s a lovely touch, a really nice touch.

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