Sporting Advent Calendar #22: Bernard Brogan goal a key moment on road to Sam
Dublin attacker once more the main man as Mayo’s challenge is eventually brushed aside
Dublin’s Bernard Brogan celebrates scoring against Mayo. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho
It is a mark of Dublin’s strength in depth that their raft of All Star winners this year included four first-timers, one of whom Jack McCaffrey would become Footballer of the Year. One of the veteran class would however have been an equally plausible choice.
Bernard Brogan was awarded his fourth All Star and once again it’s unarguable that Dublin wouldn’t have won the All-Ireland without him. His startling scoring statistics are at this stage well known: 6-20 from play in the championship made him the third highest scorer, behind two prolific dead ball marksmen, Cillian O’Connor and Sean Quigley.
Of course the champions had some matches easier than others but Brogan’s intervention in the All-Ireland semi-final replay altered the course of a match that had not been going Dublin’s way.
At 54.54 in the match, Mayo led by three, 1-12 to 0-12. They had scored just a point in the previous 13 minutes but still held the initiative.
That changed when Brian Fenton was put into an ocean of space by Alan Brogan. The rookie centrefielder was able to romp into goal scoring range and despite Bernard Brogan demanding the ball on the edge of the square, he elected to have a crack himself.
The shot was pulled across the square and Brogan, having not received the pass he initially wanted, none the less pressed in and when the ball took its unexpected trajectory, there he was to steer the ball into the net with his left foot.
“A real poacher’s goal,” said RTE match commentator Darragh Moloney.
Exactly 90 seconds later Brogan raced in along the end line and popped the ball up for Philip McMahon to bundle it into the net. At 2-12 to 1-12 Dublin supporters celebrated as if they’d won the match - which, effectively Brogan just had.