herald

Monday 21 January 2019

Dublin have learned a lot from 2009 catastrophe

NEVER mind 2009: Dublin are a totally different team two years on from their last championship catastrophe against Kerry.

So says Paul Flynn (left), who insists that his Dublin colleagues have "learned a lot" from such crushing defeats -- and he's found an ally in Kerry boss Jack O'Connor.

Speaking ahead of next Sunday's All-Ireland SFC final, O'Connor said he's not anticipating a "shootout like you had in 2009" when Kerry demolished quarter-final favourites Dublin by a staggering 17 points.

"I think Dublin have improved dramatically. I mean (Pat) Gilroy and (Mickey) Whelan have done a serious job with the team. They dismantled the team from 2009; there are very few of the same players there playing the same positions, so they have radically overhauled the team," the Kerry supremo pointed out.

"What can I say? They're a tough nut to crack and a hard team to break down at this stage, because they have a great defensive system in place."

Two years ago, Kerry destroyed the Dubs with an early blitzkrieg, prompting manager Gilroy to famously admit his players had resembled "startled earwigs".

But Flynn, who started that day but has subsequently flourished in the role of all-action wing-forward, declared: "Nothing like that has ever happened to us since that game, so we've moved on as a group."

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