How do Dublin's latest All-Ireland winning team match up with winners from a previous era? To celebrate the announcement of Ballygowan and Energise Sport as the Official Hydration partners of Dublin GAA we'd thought we'd take a look.
Dublin 1995 v 2013
After a half decade of agonising losses and costly penalty misses, the Dublin team of the early 90s finally hauled themselves over the line to win the All-Ireland title in 1995.And while it was an agonisingly tight encounter (Dessie Farrell admitted in his autobiography that had injury time dragged on for even three more minutes, they'd probably have lost it) it was the least they deserved after the final defeats of 1992 and 1994, not to mention the semi-final loss to eventual winners Derry in 1993.
They pipped Tyrone in a nerve-jangling finale on a scoreline of 1-10 to 0-12.
The 1995 effort was clearly the last push from an Dublin team stuffed with veterans from the memorable four game saga with Meath in 1991. They had overdosed on heartache over the previous five years. They hadn’t the stomach for anymore.
Having got the job done, Pat O'Neill departed. Dublin expended all their energy in getting across the finish line and retreated into the wilderness for the rest of the decade.
They are products of a very different world to their slick descendants of 2013-15.
How many of that side would break into the current side?
Like the current crop, Dublin were captained by their goalkeeper, the only surviving starter from their last victory in 1983, John O'Leary (Redmond had been on the panel). He, however, faces stiff competition from the present day.
Their half-back line was possibly the 1995 team’s strongest line. Man of the Match that day went to wing-back Paul Curran, one of the Dubs' most consistent players during that decade. Keith Barr remains one of the most iconic names from the Dublin side of that era, playing a vivid part in the four game saga in '91. These dominating figures earn their place on the composite team.
Mick Deegan completed the half-back line. Intriguingly, Deegan played for Crusaders in the Northern Irish League during the late 90s. In midfield, Dublin had Paul Bealin and Brian Stynes, brother of Australian Rules icon Jim and a renowned workmanlike midfielder in his own right. The forwards who guided Dublin to victory on that sun-baked day in 1995 included Jim Gavin, Paul Clarke and Dessie Farrell.
The last of the half-forward line trio really turned up in that final. Farrell kicked four points from play in the first half and was instrumental in the Dubs holding their nerve. Room has to be found for Dessie Farrell in any prospective composite team.
Charlie Redmond, one of the biggest personalities on that team, wins selection in the corner. At full forward it gets tricky. While Dublin are richly endowed in this area today, Jason Sherlock’s performances are remembered vividly by everyone. He terrorised full-back lines and seemed to find the net every match, save the final. Ultimately, recalling the manner in which he lit up that summer, we have to go for Jayo.
Here's the team:
Stephen Cluxton; Philly McMahon, Rory O'Carroll, Keith Galvin; Paul Curran, Keith Barr, Jack McCaffrey; Michael Dara MacAuley, Cian O'Sullivan; Paul Flynn, Dessie Farrell, Diarmuid Connolly; Charlie Redmond, Jason Sherlock, Bernard Brogan