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"Jim Gavin Would Smack Me" - Michael Darragh MacAuley Offers Rare Insight Into Dublin Setup

"Jim Gavin Would Smack Me" - Michael Darragh MacAuley Offers Rare Insight Into Dublin Setup

Going for their third successive All-Ireland this year, Jim Gavin would have been keenly aware of the dangers complacency held for his all-conquering Dublin team.

A more private GAA manager than most, five-time All-Ireland winner Michael Darragh MacAuley shared one of his manager's methods in stifling any such ill-effects.

Although MacAuley joked that Gavin would 'give me a smack here' for allowing such insight, the recruitment of Damien Dempsey for an inspirational speech to the group,

blew the socks off everyone - the best person we've had, the most influential.

It does not take a great leap to imagine the galvanising effect a performer MacAuley's dubs 'Mr. Dublin' could feasibly have on this group of Dublin footballers.

In fact, Dempsey's impact was writ so large on Dublin's year that 'he ended up becoming the soundtrack to the team.'

In a fascinating interview with Jim Carroll on Culture Night, MacAuley also revealed how close he came to losing his growing collection of All-Ireland winners' medals.

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With his father seemingly unhappy with the cavalier attitude MacAuley had for taking care of his Celtic crosses, 'he hid them':

Then my Dad passed away, but, he'd never told us where they were. ... It was a year gone, two gone [and] no Celtic crosses. ... I didn't know where they were.

We were moving house and the house was actually getting demolished - so everything was getting picked up and thrown in a skip.

We were just picking out the condiments drawer with all the old salts and peppers that were about 10 years gone off and [the medals] were hidden at the back of the drawer.

Discussing the influence that black American culture had on him growing up, the Ballyboden man spoke candidly not only about Dublin GAA.

Coming to terms with the tragedy of losing his mother while still a primary school student, MacAuley describes listening to Tupac as a means of comfort and inspiration:

Tupac was one of my biggest teachers growing up ... many a life lesson I got from that man.

In an all too brief interview with this instrumental figure in Dublin's recent footballing revival, MacAuley's comments only serve to leave us wanting more information about this remarkable team.

See Also: Dublin Ladies Dominate The 2017 All-Star Nominations List

Arthur James O'Dea

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