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Sunday 19 August 2018

Goggins: Young hearts need to be won by Dubs heroics

AFTER what can only be described as a monumental weekend for Dublin GAA, the pity for the marketing and promoting of Gaelic football around the Capital City is that the next generation of Dublin footballers won’t get to see these guys again in competitive action until the National Football League kicks off next year.

When the Dubs last lifted Sam Maguire back in 1995, the league format was run off from November through March, |meaning those gripped by the teams success only had a six-week wait before they got to see their newly crowned heroes back in action again.

The change in 2002 which shifted the season to a |February start now means that Dublin GAA’s |greatest marketing tool, the team, will be shelved for four months as the players break away from what has been a second home for the last 10 months, and prepare for the upcoming rounds of Club Championship matches.

While I don’t propose making an argument for re-instating the league to a November start, or even introducing matches into a period that is now viewed as the Inter-County closed period, I do hope the powers that be at executive level in the County utilise the magnitude of this All-Ireland success to spread the word of Gaelic Football throughout the county.

I have a slight memory of my Dad bringing Sam Maguire to our house back in 1983, and for the bits I don’t remember the trusty Polaroid camera recorded the rest.

However, although the memory was functioning slightly better in 1995 I can’t honestly recall laying my hands on the trophy when, as I presume it did, visited Ballinteer.

To this end it will also be vitally important for the clubs around the city, regardless of whether they had a player involved in the squad or not, to ensure that when Sam Maguire visits their locality, that they put together a rota for visiting all the schools in the area in a bid to attract more youngsters to a game that continues to face stiff competition for young hearts and minds from both soccer and rugby alike.

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