A perfect look back over Dublin’s Historic Four In A Row

The Lashing Rain. Alan Brogan’s Winning Point. Stephen’s Smile. The Replay. Connolly’s Penno. Costello Shines. Mayo Again. O’Callaghan’s Goal. Cluxton’s Save. Rocks Winner. McCaffrey’s Marching Smile. Mannion’s Penno. Scully’s Palms. Kilkenny’s Shorts! Pure Football.

Some will read the above and wonder. Some will remember every last details. Dublin made history, lifting the Sam Maguire for the fourth year in succession. There was talk about the four in a row for such a long time. When it finally happened, though expected, was still a thing of beauty.

But to watch back the clips since 2015, it really does show just how amazing a fete it was. From the pouring rain in 2015, through a replay and two close calls against Mayo, to the final accomplished victory over Tyrone. You could make a highlight reel that could last for hours, and it still wouldn’t do the displays any justice.

In this GAANOW video, you can reminisce to your hearts desire, all the highs, all those vital scores, all those special moments that culminated in Stephen Cluxton lifting Sam once again a few weeks ago.

Dublin 0-12 Kerry 0-09 (2015)

A strong first half proved far more than half the battle for determined Dublin who braved the difficult Croke Park conditions to hold on for a third All-Ireland title success in five seasons, their second at Kerry’s expense in that period, as they prevailed by 0-12 to 0-09.

Jim Gavin’s side built up a four-point half-time lead after a strong finish to the opening half when they outscored holders Kerry by six points to one. It afforded the Sky Blues a cushion that they relied upon throughout an error-strewn game that they ultimately deserved to win and, in truth, could have won by significantly more.

Paul Flynn, Bernard Brogan and Dean Rock lead the scoring, but it was Alan Brogan’s winning point that washed away the memory of his distraught demeanour the year before after losing to Donegal in the Semi Finals.

Dublin 1-15 Mayo 1-14 (2016 Replay)

Dublin retained the Sam Maguire Cup for the first time since 1977 with a 1-15 to 1-14 replay win over Mayo. Heartbreak visited Mayo once again, and they continued to search for their first title since 1951.

Diarmuid Connolly’s second-half penalty gave the Dubs the vital score which helped them reach out for their fourth Sam Maguire Cup success in six years, and their 26th in all.

Dean Rock claimed the championship top scorer title with a nine-point haul, but he was matched on the day by the 0-09 of Cillian O’Connor, whose late equaliser a fortnight ago had set up this thrilling re-match. But it was the three point cameo off the bench by Cormac Costello that riled the Dublin fans into a frenzy just when they thought they may not hang on.

Dublin 1-17 Mayo 1-16 (2017)

Another year but the same outcome, as Dublin won Sam Maguire Cup for the third year in a row, after a 1-17 to 1-16 win over a heartbroken Mayo team who dominated for long periods.

Losing by 1-05 to 0-09 at half-time, Dublin emptied their far superior bench but it was Dean Rock with a free in the sixth minute of injury time that won it for the champions.

Lee Keegan scored a goal for Mayo in the 54th minute, they went a point up and looked like kicking on. But Dublin were not back-to-back champions for no reason and Jim Gavin used his bench well, bringing on Diarmuid Connolly and Kevin McManamon at half-time as the Dubs put in an improved second-half performance.

The finest moment of this game, came right at the beginning when Con O’Callaghan waltzed by Colm Boyle and poked the ball past David Clarke in the Mayo goal right in front of Hill 16.

Dublin 2-17 Tyrone 1-14 (2018)

Quite simply the most decisive Dublin victory in their six All Ireland’s this decade, and we got to witness history in the making. Their claim to be the greatest team of all time slowly but surely becomes more undeniable.

And this was over and done by the half time whistle with a penalty from Paul Mannion and a superbly worked move that finished with Niall Scully palming the ball into the Tyrone net.

Tyrone gave it their all, but Dublin were simply better than them in all facets of the game – pure skill, tactical intelligence, and raw athleticism. Players like Jack McCaffrey, Brian Fenton, and Ciaran Kilkenny in particular were just on another level, and Tyrone didn’t have the quality to match them blow for blow.

This Dublin team has inked another entry into the record-books, and you get the strong feeling they’re not finished just yet.

(video credit: GAANOW via YouTube)