Brilliant Brogan pushes Dubs to victory
There followed the usual Mayo blitz they always save for Dublin in Croke Park. The packed middle third of Hill 16 visibly shuddered as Aidan O’Shea’s nicely clipped score was followed over the next nine minutes by Doherty’s brace, Enda Varley, Lee Keegan and Doherty again.
It got worse as Tomás Brady, the recently converted hurler, went down with hamstring injury, but Dublin were surprisingly unruffled as history seemed to be repeating itself.
Brogan was at the helm, kicking a free before rising above Kenneth O’Malley and Ger Cafferkey to punch a cracking point.
Cafferkey was being destroyed by the 2010 footballer of the year. Something similar was happening to Kevin O’Brien down the other end – Enda Varley running him ragged.
Cian O’Sullivan levelled matters on 27 minutes before another Brogan free was followed by a fine point from Paddy Andrews. This time Brogan turned creator with a cross field kick pass.
When Brogan combined with Paul Flynn on 32 minutes to roll the ball into O’Malley’s left corner, Mayo looked on the edge of a hammering. But they refused to wilt, Varley and Michael Conroy scores making it a three-point game at half-time.
Doherty was keeping the scoreboard ticking over for Mayo and soon after Brennan walked they eased into a 0-13 to 1-9 lead.
Dublin even missed a penalty – O’Malley saving low from a Stephen Cluxton hit – but they had another gear. And a second goal.
McManamon shrugged off Keith Higgins, no mean feat, before placing his shot around O’Malley.
Brogan took over, reaming off three points, each one better than the one before.
Mayo’s inaccuracy ruined any chance of a late revival, ensuring it was Dublin’s night.
Really though, it was Brogan’s game.
Dublin: S Cluxton (capt); D Daly, R O’Carroll, K O’Brien; J Cooper, G Brennan, J McCaffrey; D O’Mahony, C O’Sullivan; P Flynn, T Brady, C Reddin, C Kilkenny; P Andrews, B Brogan.
Mayo: K O’Malley; C Barrett, G Cafferkey, K Higgins (capt); L Keegan, D Vaughan, C Boyle; J Gibbons, B Moran; K McLoughlin, A O’Shea, R Feeney; E Varley, J Doherty, M Conroy.
Referee: C Reilly (Meath)
Dublin 2-14 Mayo 0-16
Armagh 3-9 Longford 2-8
Laois 1-17 Louth 2-14
Meath 1-6 Cavan 0-15
Antrim 2-9 Fermanagh 1-12
Waterford 0-6 Limerick 0-8