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Five Of The Biggest Gaelic Football Upsets Of The Last Decade

Football upsets

During the week, Kildare fans fondly reminisced about their stunning upset over Mayo in the All-Ireland Football Championship two years ago to send the previous year’s finalists crashing out of the competition.

With the wait for inter-county action continuing, we’re taking a look back at some of the most memorable Gaelic Football Championship results of the last decade.

2011 All-Ireland minor final: Tipperary 3-9 Dublin 1-14

Dessie Farrell and David Power both took over as the new senior managers of their respective counties at the end of last season and the last time these bosses met in Croke Park, Tipperary recorded a highly-unexpected All-Ireland Minor Final win over a star-studded Dublin outfit.

football upsets

It was their first title in 77 years as goals from Liam McGrath, Michael Quinlivan, and a superb match-winning effort from Colman Kennedy in the dying minutes, saw the Premier County see off the side containing likes of Ciarán Kilkenny, John Small, Jack McCaffrey and Cormac Costello by one point.

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2018 All-Ireland round three qualifier: Kildare 0-21 Mayo 0-19 

Who can forget the rallying cry of ‘Newbridge or Nowhere’ which steeled the Lilywhites for a famous victory in 2018? Mayo, All-Ireland finalists the year previous, traveled to Kildare as heavy favourites to progress one step closer to the Super 8s.

Football upsets

However, Cian O’Neill’s side had different ideas and managed to go toe-to-toe with the Westerners before scoring six of the last nine points of the game with nine different players pointing for Kildare. With a pulsating two-point win, they subjected Mayo to their earliest championship exit in 10 years.

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2014 All-Ireland semi-final: Donegal 3-14 Dublin 0-17 

Having easily strolled through every encounter in the 2014 championship up to that point, a confident Dublin side were heavy favourites heading into their semi-final clash with Donegal and that was justified in the first half as they found themselves with a five-point advantage by the 19th minute.

Football upsets

However, Jim McGuinness’ side soon tore up the script and fought their way back to a two-point game before Ryan McHugh scored his opening goal to give them a narrow advantage at half-time. Both McHugh and Colm McFadden raised more green flags in the second period to ensure that, despite their best efforts, the reigning All-Ireland champions couldn’t find their way back into contention.

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2010 All-Ireland quarter-final: Down 1-16 Kerry 1-10

Down produced one of the most memorable Gaelic Football upsets of the decade when they sent the reigning All-Ireland champions Kerry out of the championship at the quarter-final stage in 2010 despite being labeled as major underdogs.

football upsets

Marty Clarke was the star of the show for Down while Mark Poland was the crucial goalscorer. The result would have been all the more unflattering for the Kingdom had David Moran not scored a penalty in stoppage time but they never looked to seize control at any stage throughout this contest.

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2016 All-Ireland quarter-final: Tipperary 3-13 Galway 1-10

Tipperary were involved in another major football championship upset in 2016 when they produced a powerful and dominant performance to stun Connacht champions Galway and progress to their first All-Ireland semi-final since 1935.

Football upsets

The Premier County weren’t given much hope after losing 11 of their players from the previous year for various reasons but they seemed to relish the wide, open space of Croke Park as Michael Quinlivan and Conor Sweeney both rattled the net to end Galway’s bid for Sam Maguire.

Author: Marisa Kennedy

Marisa is a Digital Journalist with Pundit Arena. You can contact her at marisa@punditarena.com or on Twitter

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