One that got away?

As I was watching Kerry pull away from Kildare to win last night’s U21 All-Ireland final by a comfortable margin of seven points, it was with a sense of what might have been. Although Kildare put it up to the Kingdom for the first fifteen minutes or so, once Kerry took the lead with a goal against the run of play from Mike O’Donoghue, the Lillies were quickly struggling to stay in touch. Their cause wasn’t helped by a number of bad wides but a second Mike O’Donoghue goal for Kerry early in the second half effectively ended the challenge of Glen Ryan’s men. As a result, it ended up as quite a one-sided decider, which made me think that our semi-final defeat to the new All-Ireland champions a few weeks back turned out to be even more costly than it appeared on the day itself. I know there’s an element of shoulda, coulda, woulda about such conjecture but I can’t help feeling that our failure to close out that match against Kerry almost certainly cost us a fifth U21 crown.

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