The advantage which Dublin has at the moment in terms of resources, especially monetary, is a hot topic in GAA. They've coasted through the Championship this season without being tested. Their biggest game of the year so far comes a week on Sunday when they face Donegal in the All-Ireland semi-final, and hopefully it will be a more competitive game than they had against Monaghan nine days ago.
Donegal manager Jim McGuinness, someone who coincidentally has often been called the Jose Mourinho of GAA, has compared the advantage enjoyed by Dublin to that which Chelsea had in the Premier League when they were initially taken over by Roman Abramovich.
Quoted in The Irish Times, McGuinness said:
Oh it is. It has to be. I think the divide is becoming bigger and bigger. I think Dublin are way out in front of any other team. I suppose if we were having this conversation 10 years ago, you would say Kerry were the teams that had all the resources. They really looked after their players – jobs, Kerry Group supporting them and all that type of thing.
But Dublin have just, you know, it was like Abramovich going into the Premier League. It’s a different ball game. The level that they have taken sports science to. Nutrition, conditioning, the amount of coaches they have – it’s a professional set up in every aspect. And they’re getting the benefit of that now.
Maybe other counties just need to be taken over by oligarchs to level the GAA playing field again.
There is also, of course, the talk of splitting Dublin into two teams, something which we took a bit of time to imagine last year.
Picture credit: David Maher / SPORTSFILE