Dublin and Kerry meet once again this weekend in what is sure to be a historic All-Ireland final.
Either Dublin will become the first to complete the five-in-a-row or Kerry will pull off the game’s greatest win since Offaly denied the Kingdom in their own quest for five successive titles in 1982.
It’s an age-old rivalry but it’s interesting to note that the previous decade ended with a humiliating defeat for Dublin at the hands of Kerry. However, it was a defeat that set the sky blues up for a decade of dominance.
A lot has changed in ten years, but the rivalry remains the same, fierce! As we tick down towards yet another meeting between Gaelic football’s two glamour sides, let’s have a look at five iconic moments over those past ten years.
Colm Cooper Goal – 2009 All-Ireland Quarter-Final
The 2009 quarter-final meeting between Dublin and Kerry was billed as a meeting of All-Ireland winners in waiting, only it was Dublin many were expecting to make the breakthrough. Pat Gilroy’s side had collected their fourth Leinster title on the spin after defeating Kildare in the final. Kerry were coming into the game off the back of a tricky qualifier run where Tómas Ó Sé and Colm Cooper had been dropped for breaking a drinking ban.
Kerry were denied the three-in-a-row a year earlier by Tyrone and many felt that we had seen the best of that great Kingdom side. Dublin were red-hot favourites. But just like that, the game was over. Kerry had silenced Hill 16 after just 40 seconds when Cooper slotted underneath Cluxton, before going on to annihilate the Dubs. Dublin were sent home packing while Kerry would go on to collect another Sam Maguire title.
Kevin McManamon Goal – 2011 All-Ireland Final
The next meeting between the two sides came in the 2011 All-Ireland final as Dublin finally qualified for the showpiece decider following years of heartbreak.
They probably should have made the final, maybe even won the whole lot in 2010, but for a vastly experienced Cork side who, in hindsight, knew it was the last chance saloon for many of their team.
Kerry looked to be coasting in the 2011 final as the game entered the final 10 minutes. They led by four until super-sub, Kevin McManamon, finished to the net to set-up a grandstand finish.
Stephen Cluxton Point – 2011 All-Ireland Final
Following McManamon’s goal, the action continued as a war of attrition entailed to see who would come out on top in this iconic battle.
In the end, it was McManamon who won the vital free-kick that gave Dublin’s talismanic goalkeeper, Stephen Cluxton, the chance to go up and kick the winning score and give Dublin their first All-Ireland title in 16 years.
Check out that score and the scenes that followed afterwards.
James O’Donoghue Goal – 2013 All-Ireland Semi-Final
Widely considered one of the greatest games of all time. The two met in the final four of the 2013 Championship and it was anybody’s guess as to who was going to come out on top.
As it transpired, Dublin rallied late with that man, McManamon, hitting a superb goal in the closing stages to kill Kerry’s hopes and set-up a final meeting with Mayo.
However, for most, that game is remembered for the brilliance of Colm Cooper playing in the unfamiliar role of centre-forward. ‘Gooch’ was a thorn in Dublin’s side throughout a crazy first half of football that saw three goals in the first 13-minutes. His pass to Donnacha Walsh, who then instinctively laid it on a plate for O’Donoghue to bury past Cluxton in the fourth minute, however, was worth the entrance fee alone.
Alan Brogan Point – 2015 All-Ireland Final
“What an introduction… The Hill erupts!”
The 2015 All-Ireland final between Dublin and Kerry was a drab encounter played in torrential rain. However, the game is remembered for Alan Brogan’s last involvement in a Dublin jersey as he carried the ball from one end of the field to the other before securing another All-Ireland title for Dublin.
What made the moment all the sweeter was that Brogan had previously planned to retire in 2014 – until Jim McGuinness’s Donegal side put paid to those plans. He clearly made the right decision to come back for one more year as his score was to be the clincher in that final.