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Lionel Messi Was At The Centre Of Eamon Dunphy's Dublin v Mayo Analysis

Lionel Messi Was At The Centre Of Eamon Dunphy's Dublin v Mayo Analysis
By Sinead Farrell

There's a problem with policing rules in Gaelic Football, according to soccer expert Eamon Dunphy. Speaking on the Today with Sean O'Rourke programme, the soccer expert expressed his shock at the treatment of Mayo's Aidan O'Shea in the All-Ireland Semi-Final against Dublin.

Dunphy said that callous exchanges of this nature are comparably less evident in soccer where players like Messi have more space to express their talents.

I got sucked in to this game. Aidan O'Shea tried to play by the rules. He was manhandled and mauled to the ground and I was disappointed with the way they (Dublin) were allowed to get away with that.

You have to allow players to breathe. At least in football, Messi would be allowed to play. You wouldn't get away with it in hurling but Gaelic football has a huge problem.

Eugene McGee who also featured on the programme, refuted Dunphy's comments saying that comparisons should not be made between Messi and O'Shea on account of their height difference.

Aidan O'Shea is a big strong player. Messi wouldn't get that kind of treatment because I understand that he is a smaller player. People assume that O'Shea is able to take any abuse that's coming to him.

Yesterday's All-Ireland semi-final was an exhibition of towering strength and physicality from both sides. The hefty exchanges exceeded boiling point at times which amounted to two black cards, one red card and a slew of yellow cards being issued.

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Eugene McGee however, insists that fans enjoy the rugged nature of the sport; 'There's a tradition in the GAA that we need physicality. 80,000 were at the game yesterday and I'd say 60,000 of them would have been disappointed with a tepid game.'

Meanwhile, the performance of referee Joe McQuillan was also assessed. McGee said:

The referee needed divine inspiration yesterday but he didn't get it. Joe McQuillan was poor.

GAA correspondent for the Sunday Independent Damien Lawlor added:

God help any referee trying to control that. It was like a firefighter turning up to a fire. There was no back draft but there were blazes everywhere.

So the moral of the story is, could Messi do it on a wet Friday night in Breffy?

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