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Kerry v Dublin - Preview

The throw-in will take place at 3.30pm on Sunday September 1st and Dublin are the favourites to defend their title against Kerry. If Dublin succeed it will be a historic five All Ireland Championship titles in a row for the Capital. Essentially, this final line up is a match made in football heaven. If Mayo had beaten Dublin in their semifinal, or if Tyrone had defeated Kerry arguably the hype would not have been as palpable as it is for this pairing. Kerry (the Kingdom)  are considered GAA royalty and a fitting opponent for the defending Champions. They have been the team to consistently contend against each other over the last decade and so the anticipation building for Sunday’s final is intense!! Whether acknowledged or not, Dublin’s dominance has deterred a lot of GAA supporters. The turnout for the Kerry-Tyrone semi-final in Croke Park was the lowest for the event since 1990. It feels like time for a change coming in to the next decade of football. Are Kerry equipped to shake things up?

What do we know from the qualifying rounds so far?

Kerry will need to create and convert more chances than they did against Tyrone if they are going to derail the Dublin side. 23 chances were created in their semi-final but only 12 of these converted to points on the board. There has always been much debate about the advantage that Dublin has in terms of population and resources compared to other county teams, but the Kerry’s GAA Centre of Excellence at Currans has been a key factor in preparing the team for battle. The centre shows the level of elite preparation that goes into preparing a county team for battle.

A team effort

Although GAA is an amateur sport, the support and preparation that goes into developing County structures, players and teams has become increasingly professional. Similar to the introduction of Hawk Eye, stats and video analysis for sports commentary, elite training facilities and professional services are standard in county GAA setups. In fact, here at Portobello Institute this drive towards increasing Elite and Professional Sports performance has driven our development of more education pathways to develop the next generation of Sports Therapists, Sports Performance Analysts and Sports Psychologist to work within the growing professional industry in Ireland and internationally. To find out more about our professional sports development pathways click here.

Unfortunately -  even with the best of elite performance preparation, Kerry will be without a key player for the final on Sunday. Stephen O’Brien was black carded in the 76th minute - the last minute of injury time – for a clear pull down on Connor McAliskey: it was also his third black card in accumulation, which under rule results in a one-match suspension and as of now means O’Brien will miss that final showdown with Dublin.

Either way - we look forward to a battle on Sunday and may the best team win!

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