We reported yesterday on the general opinion of the performance from referee David Gough in yesterday's All-Ireland Football Championship final between Dublin and Kerry.
He had his detractors, with certain fans complaining about his Dublin connections, but most were full of praise for the Meath man, including Mickey Harte, and now Joe Brolly.
"David Gough’s performance was as close to perfection as you can get in our ungovernable game," Brolly tweeted.
His confidence, calmness, consultation with officials, relationship with the players, integrity, commitment to fairness & getting the big decisions right mark him out as our greatest ref.
In his column for the Irish Independent, Brolly's last line took a swipe at those Kerry voices who shared their disapproval at Gough's selection - the referee lives and works in Dublin - which Brolly implies could have influenced Gough into being overly harsh on Dublin:
As for David Gough, he was perfection itself. This time, the Kerry propaganda did not get to him.
Joe Brolly Praises All-Ireland Final Performance Of David Gough
David Gough’s performance was as close to perfection as you can get in our ungovernable game. His confidence, calmness, consultation with officials, relationship with the players, integrity, commitment to fairness & getting the big decisions right mark him out as our greatest ref
— Joe Brolly (@JoeBrolly1993) July 31, 2023
However, Kerry fans were not the only guilty party in the criticism of Gough, with Dublin fans, despite their phenomenal victory, heard booing the referee at the end of the match.
In the Examiner, hurling referee Brian Gavin labelled the booing of Gough as 'disgusting', and issued strong words of disapproval towards Dublin supporters.
Winning with dignity goes a long way in the GAA but Dublin supporters fell far short of that yesterday.
Booing like they did David Gough at the final whistle was simply disgusting.
I know it’s not the first time they have done it this year – Liam Devenney was heckled during the acceptance speech in April’s Division 2 final win over Derry – and it leaves a real sour taste after a deserving win by their great team.
All-in-all, Gough's refereeing allowed for a free flowing and physical contest, which made for a great spectacle, and while it also meant that he let certain fouls go, both sides were treated equally by his whistle.
A Brolly pointed out, when you take into account that the game is often 'ungovernable', then Gough did a stand up job considering the circumstances and the enormity of the occasion.
David Gough gets booed at the end of the game 👀 pic.twitter.com/yo7UmgWUlR
— The Gaelic Corner (@thegaeliccorner) July 30, 2023
Dublin fans booing David Gough after winning the all Ireland final is ridiculously pathetic
— Pearse O’Neill (@pearsey) July 30, 2023