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Saturday 10 December 2016

Fans are left 'emotionally distraught' after Jackies come so close to All Ireland glory

Dublin fan during the match.
Dublin fan during the match.
Cork fan Paul Hurley with Dublin Children Michael 6 & Molly 13 Hurley all from the Navan rd during the Ladies GAA All Ireland final between Dublin & Cork at Croke Park, Dublin
Dublin fans Mia Donnelly, 9, and sister Alanna, 6, from Finglas.
Dublin fan during the match
Dublin fans during the match
Dejected Dublin fan after match
Dublin fan during the match
Dublin fans during the match
Dublin fan during the match
Dublin fan during the match
Dublin fans during the match
Dublin fans during the match
Dublin fans during the match
Dublin fan during the match
Dublin fans during the match
Dublin fans l-r; Dave McEvoy, Bronwyn Kelly, Luke Meechan, 4, and his dad Ian, from Malahide
Dublin fans Tanya McGonaglem, from Derry, (sister of Dublin Manager, with daugher Morgan, 2nd from left, and daughter Brenna, 6, 2nd from right, with pal Ciara Faulkner, left, from Westmeath. TG4 All-Ireland Ladies Senior Football Championship final, Cork v Dublin. Croke Park, Dublin
Dublin fans Conor McCann, from Goatstown, with children Grace, 7, and Adam, 4. TG4 All-Ireland Ladies Senior Football Championship final, Cork v Dublin. Croke Park, Dublin
Dublin footballer Alan Brogan with his son Jamie, 6. TG4 All-Ireland Ladies Senior Football Championship final, Cork v Dublin. Croke Park, Dublin. Picture: Caroline Quinn
Dublin footballer Alan Brogan poses for photo with fans. TG4 All-Ireland Ladies Senior Football Championship final, Cork v Dublin. Croke Park, Dublin. Picture: Caroline Quinn
Dublin fan Olivia Grace Kelly, 6, from Ballinteer. TG4 All-Ireland Ladies Senior Football Championship final, Cork v Dublin. Croke Park, Dublin. Picture: Caroline Quinn
Dublin fans Lorraine Doyle and daughter Shauna, 9, from Portmarnock. TG4 All-Ireland Ladies Senior Football Championship final, Cork v Dublin. Croke Park, Dublin
Dublin fans Helen Purdy, from Portmarnock, with her daughters l-r; Hanna, 18, Abbi, 12, and Nicole, 17, and god-daughter Caoimhe Ahearne, 17, right
Dublin fans Veronica McCarthy, centre back, from Donneycarney, with Emma McCarthy, 11, back left, and Ciara McCarthy, 7, with pal Angela Woods, from Clontarf, with children Mark, 4, and Clara, 6, centre
Dublin fans Martin Kennedy and Mairead with children Jack, 4, and Culainn, 2, from Castlenock
Dublin fans Rob Mullen, from Beaumont, with daughter Roisin, 7. TG4 All-Ireland Ladies Senior Football Championship final, Cork v Dublin. Croke Park, Dublin. Picture: Caroline Quinn
Dublin fans Laura Carroll, 16, and Hannah Browne, right, 16, from Coolock
Dublin fans Ernie Leslie, from Malahide, with children twins Lucy and Evan, 5.
Dublin fans and Dublin Minor footballers l-r; Sinead Moran, 17, from Rush, Sarah Jane Heckler, 17, from Palmerstown, and Sinead Collins, 18, from Clondalkin
Dublin fans l-r; Ella Mooney, 15, Amy Cole, 16, and Emma P'Toole, from Swords. TG4 All-Ireland Ladies Senior Football Championship final, Cork v Dublin. Croke Park, Dublin. Picture: Caroline Quinn
Dublin fans Laura Carroll, 16, and Hannah Browne, right, 16, from Coolock. TG4 All-Ireland Ladies Senior Football Championship final, Cork v Dublin. Croke Park, Dublin. Picture: Caroline Quinn
Dublin fans l-r: Joanne Gorman, from Finglas, Suzanne O'Sullivan, from Clonsilla, and Niamh Adams, from Finglas. TG4 All-Ireland Ladies Senior Football Championship final, Cork v Dublin. Croke Park, Dublin. Picture: Caroline Quinn
Dublin fans and Dublin Minor footballers l-r; Sinead Moran, 17, from Rush, Sarah Jane Heckler, 17, from Palmerstown, and Sinead Collins, 18, from Clondalkin
Dublin fans Thor Tamme, 6, and his sister Anu, from Ranelagh
Dublin fan Max Donnelly, 1, from Finglas
Dublin fans TG4 All-Ireland Ladies Senior Football Championship final, Cork v Dublin. Croke Park, Dublin. Picture: Caroline Quinn
Dublin fans Rob Mullen, from Beaumont, with daughter Roisin, 7

IT was a devastating defeat for the Jackies in Croker as Cork picked up their fifth consecutive All-Ireland title.

In front of a record-breaking crowd Gregory McGonigle's side fought until the final whistle, but lost by just two points.

It was a marked difference from last year's display, where the sky blues were defeated despite being 10 points ahead with 15 minutes to play.

As supporters left the stadium there was a sense of pride in the Jackies' impressive display.

For many of the fans at the game it was a family affair.

Distraught

Paul Manning, from Killester, was in Croker to cheer on his niece, Sinead Finnegan.

READ MORE: It's a European record ... as 31,000 bathe in Croker sunshine

"It was very unfortunate. I thought we could have won. I'm emotionally distraught and wrecked after that game, really," he said.

"They were unlucky, they could've done better, but Cork are very, very good," he added.

READ MORE: Dubs heartache as rebels realise their drive for five

Adam and Grace McCann (age four and seven) were kitted out to support their aunt, Sinead Goldrick.

Sinead - or Goldie as she is affectionately known by her teammates - captained the team last year.

Adam and Grace's dad, Conor McCann, told the Herald that, on the day, Cork simply had the edge. "I think Cork were the better side - and you can't really expect Dublin to win if they kick so many wides. There's not much more I can say on it, really," he said.

"You obviously go in thinking they can do it, but afterwards you look at it and can see that Cork took their chances."

"We go to all the games, so we see the quality week-in week-out," he said.

The hordes of fans who turned out to cheer on both teams showed that the ladies' game was growing in popularity.

Niamh McEvoy's brother David was already optimistic about next season for his sister and her fellow Jackies.

"Last year, you'd probably say that they threw the game away, they were so far ahead, but this year it was a much closer contest and a better game of football," he said.

"It was a travesty being 10 points clear with so little time left.

"It was a lot closer this time from start to finish and wasn't half as painful as last year, when you think you have it in the bag with five or six minutes to go," he added.

"I think they'll have a few drinks, pick themselves up and go for it again next year.

"They're a very young team. There's only two or three over the age of 24, they're all students so they can only get better if they stay together and build on it from there," he said.

Tanaiste Joan Burton turned out to support the team and was quick to weigh in on the performance of both teams.

"I think Cork were the better team today, but Dublin played really valiantly and - at the end of the day - they missed a few opportunities.

"There probably wasn't enough people down at the goalmouth when they were trying to score," she said.

Delighted

Meanwhile, her Dail colleague Micheal Martin, leader of Fianna Fail, was delighted with his home county's win - their tenth in 11 seasons.

"It was a fantastic result for Cork and a very exciting game."

"It was a very pacey, speedy game - both teams clearly have a high level of fitness.

"Dublin put in an outstanding game, but [Cork] are just phenomenal and they're producing young players all the time," he added.

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