Next Sunday in Croke Park one of the most enduring rivalries in Gaelic Football will play out another act when Dublin take on the old enemy Kerry in the All Ireland Football Final.
There have been many classics between the two sides over thee years and indeed the last meeting in the Semi Final of 2013 was one of the greatest games in the history of the sport, and this was just two years after the sides served up another classic in the 2011 Final. Dublin of course prevailed on both occasions and that may be enhancing the memories, I am sure these two games are not as fondly remembered in the Kingdom.
It is hard to say who is the form team coming into this final with both teams having very few tests along the way. Kerry opened their campaign with a 12 point victory over Clare before coming from behind to draw with Cork in the Munster Final, they ran out 5 point winners in the replay. They then progressed to the quarter final where they blitzed Kildare in Croke Park on a 7-16 to 0-10 scoreline. Next up for the kingdom was Tyrone who were dispatched on a 0-18 to 1-11 scoreline to reach their second consecutive All Ireland decider.
Dublin navigated their way to a 10th Leinster Title in the last 11 campaigns by beating Longford, Kildare and Westmeath along the way. They then faced Fermanagh and stuttered to a 2-23 to 2-15 victory, a victory that posed as many questions as it answered about Dublin’s championships credentials.
Mayo were the opposition in the semi final and Dublin needed a replay to progress, the first game ending in an ill tempered 2-12 to 1-15 draw. A week of intense media attention followed before Dublin booked their place in the final with a devastating second half performance seeing them win 3-15 to 1-14.
With Gaelic Football fast becoming a 20 man game the final will be won by the impact of the players coming off the bench and Dublin look better equipped in that department, is there any more terrifying sight for a Kerry fan than seeing Kevin McManamon enter the fray.