When Dublin veteran Bernard Brogan saluted the Hill 16 crowd following his team’s successful defence of the All Ireland Championship this year, the general consensus among fans was that of Brogan bidding farewell to the faithful who had followed his every move since his debut in 2007.
And most would have bid him a profound, yet sadly tinged adieu after such a monumental career in the blue jersey, particularly as the Oliver Plunkett Eoghan Ruadh Forward had taken a very different role in Jim Gavin’s playbook.
But after talks with Gavin recently, Bernard has made the decision to once again throw himself into another year of inter county action, even though he did strongly consider his future.
“I had some good form and bad form and was getting only so much game-time.” he told the Independent.
“So I was thinking, ‘will I give it another go or is my time gone?’ and I was rolling that around in my head.”
“I sat down with Jim and said what I felt and where I thought I was at. After I had my say, Jim indicated that he wanted me around and wanted me back and that there was a role for me.”
Surely news that will please the many adoring fans of the threat that Brogan brings to Dublin game, albeit as a bit part. This year he made several impacting performances and was always there when needed. Not to mention his maturity when others were chosen ahead of him for starting 15 positions.
Now at 33, Bernard is ready to start his 12th year as a Dublin player and is more determined than ever to play whatever role the Dublin boss chooses for him.
“I have a couple of injuries and, if I get them right, there was no reason not to go again because Jim indicated he still sees a role for me.”
“It’s about doing the simple things right and being an option and getting on the ball.”
“When you are playing at the end of the game you have to be clued in to make an impact,” he admitted.
And clued in he was during the recent championship run, registering scores in Dublin’s three provincial games, including 0-05 of Dublin’s scores in their victory over Kildare in the Leinster final. And while he didn’t tag any further scores during the remaining All Ireland Series games, Brogan certainly made his presence felt in both the Quarter Final and Final of the competition.
“Our bench has won us loads of games and that’s a mindset.”
“There’s loads you can do in those few minutes but it is different. When you are starting a game you have time to get into it and take your time but in 10 minutes… sometimes you are trying too hard in that short window. ”
“That’s where I have a bit of work to do on the mindset of it. But I understand it’s a role and it’s a valuable one.”