The All-Stars awards show has just concluded on RTÉ2 and, from our perspective, there were no surprises with how the two Footballer of the Year awards went.
In the Young Footballer of the Year category we couldn’t lose – probably just as well, seeing how we got shafted in the All-Stars – as all three players on the shortlist came from within our ranks. Eoghan McLaughlin and Tommy Conroy fully deserved to be included in this list but Oisín Mullin’s storming performance in December’s All-Ireland final meant he was always the strong favourite to win and so it proved.
Winning the YFOTY award caps a remarkable debut year at Senior inter-county level for the Kilmaine player who yesterday morning was also named on the 2020 All-Star team. Both awards are, though, no more than he’s deserved as Oisín was a very strong performer for us throughout the year. Hearty congrats to him.
It’s also worth noting that Oisín’s win brings to five the number of times players from the county have won this award over the last decade. Cillian and Diarmuid O’Connor were both back-to-back winners in previous years and, assuming Oisín is still eligible on age grounds this year (I’m not sure, to be honest, whether he is or not), I wouldn’t bet against him emulating that particular feat.
Cillian was on the shortlist tonight for the Footballer of the Year award. Despite another shoot-the-lights-out Championship campaign, in which he was, for the first time in ages, untroubled by injury, and notwithstanding the extremely persuasive case in his favour made by Colin Sheridan, this prize was always heading in Dublin’s direction and was won tonight by Brian Fenton.