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9 Fantastic Kerry And Dublin Footballers Who Never Won An All-Ireland

9 Fantastic Kerry And Dublin Footballers Who Never Won An All-Ireland
By Conor Neville Updated

We've heard about the golden years and the rare ould team of the 1970s ad nauseam. This writer fancies himself as a student of Kerry and Dublin teams during down times.

We have written about the bleak years of Kerry football between 1987 - 1996 (read it here) and the Dublin side of the late 90s and early 2000s (read that here).

Here are a list of fine Kerry and Dublin players who never won All-Ireland titles.

Ciaran Whelan

The captain on any XV of Dublin players without an All-Ireland, Whelan arrived on the scene in 1996.

Pat O'Neill's war weary Dublin team had crawled over the line to win the 1995 All-Ireland final and the manager promptly departed. He was replaced by Mickey Whelan whose tinkering with the tried and tested formulas displeased the older Dublin crop.

The Dubs were beaten by Meath in a low-scoring Leinster Final and stepped into the wilderness for a few years, only regaining the Leinster title in 2002.


Whelan won All-Stars in 1999 and 2007, and won a glut of Leinster championships in the second half of his career as the Dubs gained a stranglehold in a weak province.

There was always someone better standing in their way in the All-Ireland series. Whelan retired from inter-county football after the 2009 season.

Eamon Heery

An all-star in 1992 and Man of the Match in the 1993 League Final, Heery absented himself from the set-up during 1994 and 1995, and only returned when Pat O'Neill had left and Mickey Whelan arrived on the scene.


Tommy Carr

The Dublin manager during the bleak years of the late 90s, Carr began his football career with Tipperary before switching to the capital.

He was a team captain during the heartbreaking nearly years of the early 90s, and captained the side to the 1993 League title. However, injury precluded him being part of the 1995 triumph and forced his retirement.

Niall Guiden


Guiden was one of Dublin's most impressive forwards during the 1991 'saga' with Meath and retained his spot at wing forward until he was harshly dropped at the commencement of the 1995 season.

Like Heery, he returned to the fold once Mickey Whelan took the job.

Connie Murphy


Occupies an unusual place in history in that he may be the only Kerry footballer ever to win an All-Star but not win an All-Ireland.

Murphy was selected at right half back on the team of 1989, the final year of Mick O'Dwyer's reign in which Kerry lost the Munster Final to eventual AI winners Cork by three points.

Played for Kerry between 1988 and 1994, winning a solitary provincial title in 1991.


Shane Ryan

A powerful, bustling runner, Ryan, like many veterans of the Pillar Caffrey era, clocked up a fair few Leinster titles without reaching an All-Ireland decider.

Like Conal Keaney, he decided to switch his attention to hurling in 2009 before it was too late. He won an All-Star with the footballers in 2008.


Timmy Fleming

Another fine Kerry player cursed to have been born in the wrong era, Fleming did win an U21 medal with Kerry in 1990 and a AI club title with Laune Rangers in 1995.

Corner forward on the Kerry team that won Munster in 1991.

Conal Keaney

Like Ryan and Whelan, his back pockets are jammed with Leinster football medals, but free of All-Ireland medals. On the eve of the 2011 season, he switched from football to his first love and hurling, eventually winning a historic Leinster title with the hurlers in 2013.

Jer D O'Connor

The Kerry online forums rhapsodise about the fielding ability of midfield veteran from the 1960s, Jer D O'Connor.

He played between 1960 and 1967, but was injured for the only All-Ireland victory of the period, the 1962 triumph against Roscommon.

Played in three All-Ireland finals, sensationally losing to Down in 1960, and was on the team when Kerry ran into the unbeatable Galway side of the mid-1960s, losing finals in 1964 and 1965.

Read more: Kerry - The Lost Years... 1987 - 1996

Read more: Dublin Football's Bleak Years - The Time The Capital Couldn't Even Win Leinster



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