If you polled the country for the Top 100 least popular people, you'd expect Cavanman Joe McQuillan would be find himself on that list some place. I was sitting amongst Kildare people at the match yesterday and they were f'ing and blinding at McQuillan from the second McQuillan threw in the ball.
Here are three games where Joe McQuillan had GAA fans up in arms. Weirdly, Dublin have been involved in all of them.
1. 2011 All-Ireland final
Like the Dubs yesterday, Kerry squandered a huge lead late and McQuillan, the ref that day, found himself in the eye of the storm when he awarded a late free for a foul on Barry John Keane that was perceived as soft by Kerry folk. Afterwards, Jack O'Connor went on the record with his disappointment of the way McQuillan refereed the game.
“I’m caught between a rock and a hard place when talking about the referee. If you say anything about referees, you’re portrayed as a whinger. But I’ll make a general comment that it appeared to us on the line that it was much harder for our fellas to get frees than it was the other way around. The likes of Declan [O’Sullivan] and Darran [O’Sullivan] at times got a lot of abuse going through when attacking. They found it hard to get frees. There was a couple that went against us, the most obvious being for handling the ball on the ground. That was a mistake as the replay told.”
Judge for yourself.
2. 2013 All-Ireland final
So we'll skip the preamble. Mayo are down three deep in injury time and have a free 10 metres from goal. Cillian O'Connor has a quick chat with McQuillan. O'Connor decides to take the point. McQuillan blows up the game after Cluxton restarts. O'Connor rages, believing there'd be at least 30 seconds of injury time to play.
"My understanding was that there would be another little bit of time and if we had maybe won the kick-out and scored an equaliser it would have looked a good decision," O'Connor told the Irish Independent after.
3. 2015 All-Ireland semi-final
Well commented at this stage, though an amry of Joe McQuillan's would have struggled to keep control over that.
The Man Of The Match award goes to Mayos Joe McQuillan
— Hill 16 Army (@Hill16Army) August 30, 2015
How many black card offences do Dublin need to commit before Joe McQuillan takes action?
— Ciaran Watters (@CiaranWatters1) August 30, 2015