Monday 20 November 2017

Moran stresses need for Dublin goals and support of the Hill

Dublin's last two championship defeats came when they were held goalless and former Dublin skipper Collie Moran believes they must raise green flags to prevail in tomorrow's decider.

The defeats to Mayo (2012) and Donegal (2014) both came on the back of luckless shooting when baring down on goal, something they can ill afford against the reigning champions.

Moran expects a titanic decider to come down to the ability of Jim Gavin's side to break down stubborn Kerry defending and beat goalkeeper Brendan Kealy at least once.

"If Dublin get goals then they are well on their way to victory. I think they will because the likes of James McCarthy, Jack McCaffrey and Michael Darragh Macauley will be bombing forward," he said at The Herald Guinness preview at Parnell's GAA club last night.

"They'll attack down through the middle and create opportunities with quick hand passes. It'll be interesting to see how Kerry line up to stop this. I was surprised to see Aidan O'Mahony starting but I think he could act as an extra defender. If they stop Dublin scoring goals, they'll win it."

The Ballyboden St Enda's defender led Dublin to Leinster titles in 2006 and 2007 and he appreciates more than most the need for Hill 16 to get behind the Dubs.

"When you're going well the noise coming from the Hill is incredible. You feel fitter and stronger and it gives you an unbelievable energy," Moran said.

"That's why when Dublin get an important score they often hit 1-3 or 1-4 without reply and it's often a match-winning purple patch.

"But when it's not going well you can feel that anxiety seeping down from the terraces and the opposition can sense that and they capitalise on it. "

Kerry great Eoin 'Bomber' Liston, on the other hand, expects captain Kieran Donaghy, who is on the bench, or Paul Geaney, in the team at full-forward, to do serious damage at the other end of the field.

"I think Donaghy has the beating of Rory O'Carroll from the battles I've seen, but Geaney is like a secret assassin," Liston said.

"It's obvious they're going to play low, fast ball and try and take him on that way. And if it doesn't work, Donaghy will be in. Then they'll bombard them with aerial ball.

"Who knows, we might even see the 'Twin Towers' (Donaghy and Tommy Walsh) again."

An intriguing game is in store but Moran is adamant that the Sam Maguire will be heading to the capital.

"I just think Dublin are in a really great frame of mind right now. They will have learned harsh lessons from the Donegal defeat last year and Jim Gavin will have a second All-Ireland on Sunday."

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