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9 Analysts Who Were A Breath Of Fresh Air In This Year's Football Championship

9 Analysts Who Were A Breath Of Fresh Air In This Year's Football Championship
By Mark Farrelly Updated

I'm a bit fed up of listening to people give out about the likes of Brolly and Spillane so I thought it might be a nice idea to close the book on the 2015 championship with a positive debate. That being the Gaelic football pundits who have caught our eye for all the right reasons this year.

James Horan

Mayo's loss has certainly been our gain. James Horan has featured heavily over the past few months on television and radio, offering a great insight into his own methods when managing and generally seeming like a very affable chap.

Dick Clerkin

The Monaghanman hasn't even retired from intercounty football yet and already he's an established voice on the airwaves and in the Irish Examiner.

Clerkin is always worth listening to and his column with the Examiner has caught our eye time and time again. A great analyst is one who makes you question your own thoughts on a topic. Clerkin is certainly adapt at doing just that.

For instance, just a couple of weeks ago he contested that deep down, we all loved the controversy that plagued the latter stages of this year's championship.

Jim McGuinness

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I don't think it came as a surprise to anyone when Jim McGuinness proved to be a fascinating pundit. His Irish Times column grew from strength-to-strength as the summer wore on. He's not one for anecdotes or beating around the bush, and instead tends to delve straight into an in-depth tactical analysis.

Here was his blunt verdict on Sky Sports in the wake of Kerry's All-Ireland final defeat.

I was disappointed in Kerry's attack today. I think in the first half tactically they went with the wrong gameplan.

Paul Geaney is a dynamic player, you put him in along with dynamic players but they played a long ball, big man game. So that didn't made sense to me. If it was Kieran Donaghy in there and it was long ball on the diagonal, I think that could have worked.

It should have been one bounce, it should have been a dink ball. Win the ball, slip it to a runner. They didn't go with that. They went with Kieran Donaghy tactics with Paul Geaney. To me that didn't make sense.

Mossy Quinn

Quinn has been around for a while now but he continues to be one of the most underrated football analysts going. Indeed he pretty much called the Dublin v Mayo replay spot on, the day after the drawn match.

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Skip to 34 minutes in here.

Anthony Moyles

Sure how could we overlook our own Moylesy. It pains me to pay a Meathman a compliment but there's a reason Moyles in always in such high demand.

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More than anything, every time he's on the radio or on podcast he comes across as someone who just bloody loves football. His enthusiasm and predilection for regaling us with great dressing room tales from his playing days means that he's always well worth listening to.

Brian McGuigan

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Probably in my top three favourite players ever, Brian McGuigan must have felt like the tourism officer for Pompeii in 79AD, given the furore that surrounded Tyrone for most of the summer.

However when he wasn't being called on to defend his county's actions, McGuigan was busy offering some great analyses. His Sunday Game appearances and columns with the Gaelic Life were always well worth paying attention to.

Also read: Brian McGuigan Tells A Story Which Captures The Ruthlessness Of Mickey Harte

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Micheál Quirke

The surprise package of 2015, Mike Quirke's voice has graced many an earphone over the last few months. He's got that typical cheeky air to his voice that's distinct to Kerry GAA men.

Quirke actually joined the lads on The Hard Shoulder this week to give the view from The Kingdom after their All-Ireland final defeat.

Billy Joe Padden

I'd always contest that people from Galway and Mayo have an unfair advantage given their comely accents but there's more to Padden than just dulcet tones.

He's an ever-present on Off the Ball now and gives bullshit free analysis, which like his colleague Mossy Quinn, is often underrated.

Colm Parkinson

I thoroughly enjoy Colm Parkinson's Gaelic football analysis. There. I've said it.

Granted he divides opinion more than anyone in this list but I think he's always great to listen to. Particularly if you're listening to his sideline reporting during live commentary. Unlike many, Wooly actually paints a picture and discusses tactics and match-ups as they develop throughout the game. A concept that seems pretty straight forward but isn't as ubiquitous as you'd think in GAA coverage.

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