St. Oliver Plunkett Eoghan Ruadh youngster Sean Bugler made a massive impact in Dublin’s draw with Monaghan

Sean Bugler is pressing for a starting role

He’s not a new name to Dublin football supporters. Nor has he been given a start under Dessie Farrell this year. But Sean Bugler is rising above the competition in the race to break onto the Dublin Senior Starting 15. And last weekend in Croke Park he did himself every favour in that race.

It became common practice under Jim Gavin that every year, at least one new name would rise to the top every season. Ciaran Kilkenny’s breakthrough year in 2013, just like Paul Mannion and Jack McCaffrey. John Small and David Byrne made their presence felt in 2016. And since then players like Niall Scully, Con O’Callaghan, Brian Howard and Eoin Murchan have all picked up the mantle. Bugler was quietly introduced last year and even got a start against Tyrone last August. And in what many believed was a dead rubber game, Bugler was named man of the match.

Most fans would hope that Gavin trend continues under Dessie Farrell and so far the new Dublin manager hasn’t been shy about giving the younger lads a chance.

Bugler was called form the bench on Saturday with about half an hour left on the game clock. The Plunketts man kicked three scores into the Hill end, delighting fans as Dublin clawed back the half time nine score deficit. And if he wasn’t content with that Bugler got contact with the high ball into the area to set up Kevin McManamon for Dublin’s goal.

Curran Proclaims Bugler’s Greatness

“A great young player. Has all the attributes. A good tackler. Two feet. Very fit” Former Dublin Star Paul Curran tells the Herald this week.

“Not only is he a good footballer but he has a great brain as well. He’s one of those footballers that it doesn’t look like he’s doing much but he’s covering ground. He has great balance, let’s put it that way.”

Curran, a 1995 All Ireland Winner, is of course no stranger to Sean. He managed him at club level in 2017 and 2018. And Bugler himself, coming out of the Dublin Minors in 2017 would be no stranger to Dessie Farrell either, featuring for a spell in the U21’s.

Bugler’s slow intro could be key to success

The Plunkett’s man made his full league debut against Galway last year. He came off the bench in O’Moore Park in the Leinster opener against Louth. And of course he stepped up to the plate in the Super 8’s in Omagh, scoring three points and setting Eoghan O’Gara up for his goal. But his man of the match performance was played down as the game was seen as a “dead rubber” affair.

“I think too many people were too quick to discount his performance, simply because it was billed as a dead rubber and nobody gave it much thought and Dublin were able to win a ‘nothing game’. But he stood out.”

“You’re playing for your county and you’ve got to go out and perform, and he ended up being Man of the Match.”

“He was, I think, unlucky that he didn’t see any more game-time after that. But, you know, Dublin are a different animal – hard to break into.”

Bugler was used heavily as Farrell’s go to in the Kerry game, with a plethora of blood subs. But he was pivotal to Dublin’s comeback last weekend, securing a point against Monaghan. It will be interesting to see if that performance has an impact on Farrell’s starting 15 for the remainder of the campaign.