After a quick return from his ACL Injury last year, Bernard Brogan believes he can still bring something to the table
In the 65th minute of Dublin’s final Allianz Football League game against Cavan this year, fans roared as Bernard Brogan replaced Michael Darragh Macauley. It was slightly less comparable to the reaction the Plunkett’s star received in the last phase of the 2018 Super 8’s when he relieved Mark Schutte as a blood replacement.
But that return was an achievement in itself. Brogan, now 35, had undergone ACL surgery less than six months before that. And to return so quickly was astonishing. He didn’t feature again for the rest of Dublin’s four in a row bid. And his interaction with the crowd at the Hill 16 end of Croke Park after the All Ireland Final might have signified his farewell. Nothing could have been further from the truth.
“I could have gone off and I would have been fine, and no one would have questioned you” Brogan told the Irish Mirror.
“Obviously I’ve had a lot of chats with Jim about it, a lot of chats with management, about where’s my value? Do you still believe that I can offer something to the group?”
Thankfully for Bernard, and the throng of adoring fans, the answers to his questions were met with a resounding yes from the Dublin boss. He still sees the veteran forward in his plans for another Championship run.
Jim Gavin’s support was the perfect motivator
Brogan admits that he’s had very open and honest dialogue with Gavin about his role and was always encouraged by his support. Jim could very easily have said he wasn’t needed anymore.
“For me, it’s a very personal journey now and trying to see can I get back up to the level, to add value.”
“I still believe that I have the skill, the football and the guile and bit of experience, that I can add something different to the group that’s there.”
When Gavin named his 26 players for their opening Leinster Championship game against Louth last weekend, Bernard wasn’t surprised his name was not on the list. But in regards to the National League he admits he’d have liked more game time to get the cogs all turning again.
“I got five minutes at the end of the league…that would have helped me in my own head and my own competition-wise, for the team.”
“I was hoping for probably a little bit more time in the league, to try and get a bit of momentum, but the way things fell, the way the league went, and the actual competitive nature of it, I just didn’t get as much game time as I would have liked.”