Three All-Stars plus YFOTY award for us

Photo: GAA

The GAA/GPA Gaelic football All-Star awards for 2021 were unveiled on RTÉ a bit earlier on this evening. The football awards had none of the shock value of their hurling equivalents in what was an uncontroversial and largely fair selection.

We came away with three All-Stars. Lee Keegan picked up his fifth award, cementing his place as one of the greatest players of this generation and certainly the finest we’ve ever seen in the Green and Red. Mattie Ruane and Ryan O’Donoghue both won an All-Star for the first time.

Our other winner tonight was Oisín Mullin who landed the Young Footballer of the Year award for the second successive year. In doing so he emulated the achievements of both Cillian and Diarmuid O’Connor.

Overall, Tyrone – deservedly – filled their boots, the All-Ireland champions winning eight All-Star awards as well as the Footballer of the Year award. Kieran McGeary beat teammate Conor Meyler as well as Lee Keegan to that prestigious honour.

As well as ourselves, Kerry got a generous enough total of three All-Stars while Dublin picked up the remaining one. Full details on this year’s football awards are here.

From our perspective, three awards from eight nominations is a fair enough return, not least given the underwhelming nature of the team’s display in this year’s All-Ireland final. Personally, I was hoping that, at a minimum, both Lee and Ryan – the two men who really stood up for us in that torrid Sam Maguire decider – would win out and it’s great to see they did. With Mattie and Oisín also picking up awards this is one year where we can be happy to say we got our fair share in the All-Stars.

Congrats to all the players honoured tonight, in particular to our four winners.

38 thoughts on “Three All-Stars plus YFOTY award for us

  1. Congrats to all our winners tonight, hurlers and footballers, gone are the days when you were only nominated in one position, even the goalie is dodge with sweeper keeper role.

  2. well done to the 3 hurlers and 3 footballers. Also to Keith and Oisin on their POTY awards – the future and past!

    Agree Deelrover – the way players are moved around for awards it culd be a matter of years until someone like Niall Morgan gets awarded as FB or corner back:-)

  3. The awards have become a complete and utter joke in recent year. The last few mins of the all Ireland finals can swing up to 8 or 10 awards in a single season. This number has been creeping up progressively in recent season to the point where Limerick were awarded a farcical 12 of the 15 places in the hurling team this year. Even worse, I saw a Limerick man who works for RTE almost complaining about the 3 awards they didn’t get.
    Back to the football team – this is not the best team in Ireland as this season. No one in their right mind could think that, surely?
    There should be no more than 5 players from any one team on an all star side. That’s the way is used to be.
    If you picked a joint Kerry/Dublin/Mayo/Tyrone team in the morning how many of those Tyrone 8 would be in it?
    Come on now.
    I don’t blame the players, I blame the selectors for turning what used to be a prestigious award into a joke thing.

  4. Does anyone care about all stars at this stage?
    There’s only one prize worth having at the end of the year, and like every other year for the past 70, we don’t have it.
    I honestly couldn’t give a sh*te which county got the most all stars.
    It’s a nice little acknowledgement for individual players, but is meaningless really.

  5. David Clifford was the footballer of the year by any reasonable measure.
    Comes back to how poorly feats of scoring are recognized for their level of difficulty or rarity.

  6. My player of the year was Niall Morgan.. keeping goals out and scoring at the other end.. Probably scored the longest kick in that I can remember ever in Croke Park v Kerry… David Clifford, absolutely unbelievable magnificent talent was brilliant alright v Tyrone, but held scoreless from play by a very very poor Cork team in the Munster final, in what was a Turkey shoot, but David Clifford had no ammunition in his gun that day.. Put your money on Clifford for a hat trick next time Kerry play Cork.. Even tough the margin was 20+ points, Kerry you know the way they are will be rightly insulted by The Golden Boy not scoring and will probably have to beat Cork by 30+ points just to put manner’s on them.

  7. There was a time when 3 All-star and two FOTY awards would have had us all doing back flips. Regardless of the validity of these selections or our own bias, there really is only one award we want.

  8. Agree, Niall Morgan would be my other runner. He had the biggest influence on Tyrone winning across the season.
    Clifford had likely the record for highest average score from play across league and championship by a division one player ever, even with the scoreless game v Cork.
    It annoys me in GAA the scoring records go unheralded. David Tubridy broke the all time league scoring record….should have been a huge deal.

  9. Oisin was good this year but probably benefited from a lack of u21 players starting on any of the top sides and being eligible.
    Despite this perception of Kerry being stuffed with youngsters, many of them are 24 or 25 now.

  10. Congratulations to our 4 winners. Regardless of flaws in the system its a grest honour and achievement.
    I will say again what I said here before WJ that the it seems so many people can only rate success by winning AL. Its like the enjoyment has gone out of football in Mayo. The incredible achievements of lee and boyler and so many others seem hardly appreciated. its just total obbesion about winning AL. I think its incredibly sad that Andy Moran said in his book that he failed as a inter county player. If what he achieved is not success, the what is? Its just more of rhis AL or nothing culture. Its a toxicity that will destroy football in Mayo. Lets get back to enjoying our football at whatever level people are at because if we dont many of our youngsters will turn to other sports.

  11. Well done lads. Had pencilled in Lee and Ryan, so I’m delighted Matty got one. That will boost his confidence No end. Can’t complain about Tyrone’s haul; they’ll feel Kilpatrick and McKenna were hard done by. I’d say if the RTE panel were asked about all stars at h/t in our semi with Dublin, about eight Dubs would have been trotted out. A lot changed in the following 60 minutes.

  12. Well Lahanman, when you keep getting to finals (and yes, that in itself is a great achievement) and continually fail to get over the line, of course it becomes a preoccupation.
    We’re synonymous with falling at the final hurdle, which is arguably unfair given the achievements in the last decade in particular, but that’s the unwelcome reality.
    Personally, I don’t enjoy winning a semi final as much as previously, because the thoughts of the “will this be the year they finally do it” build up, and the inevitable “they’ll never win one now” aftermath is not appealing!
    I just want us to win, and I don’t care how. Then we put it to bed and move on!

  13. Thought Mattie getting one was the more unexpected of the 3 but he performed very well in league and championship bar the final. And a few corner forwards could have got ahead of Ryan who no doubt had a great year.
    Thought there would be a very strong case for Stephen Coen but can’t argue with the standard of defenders picked. Kerry might be similarly disappointed that Gavin White didn’t get one, he certainly was their best player vs Tyrone. And as others said the short championship skewed it even more in favour of the last 4. Limerick in hurling was farcical.

  14. Tyrone could have got 3 or 4 more All-Star places.
    My Xmas day viewing will take in the All Ireland final.
    I can only describe it as being a numb event from a Mayo perspective, felt like a final wasn’t really taking place.

  15. Well done the lads on getting all stars and Oisìn but it was tough watching clips of the final last night. A nightmare is the only way I can describe 11/09/2021.
    Will we ever get as good as chance – I fear not.

  16. One of the advantages of any league based proposal for the championship is that we could have a proper all stars and POTY awards where a much wider range of players get to put themselves in the shop window and get decent exposure in the championship.
    Hopefully then the days of one team winning 10 or 12 awards will be over

  17. Lahanman
    Success is measured differently in different countries. Success in kerry is not winning one all ireland but having a pocket full of medals. Success in Dublin will be from now on measured in the same way. Success in Tyrone was winning an all ireland but soon after the final this year Tyrone people were talking about success being winning back to back all irelands. Success in Leitrim or sligo is winning connacht. Success for us used to mean the same but when you win 5 in a row then connacht isn’t enough. When you get to as many finals as we have now, getting there is now no longer enough. And when you lose as many finals and semi’s as we have then failure is the only word for it. Unfortunately for many of our greatest players the fine line between success and failure has been wafer thin.
    But as with all sports your next chance is at least another chance. It’s hard on us but far harder on the players, but we have to keep the faith. What other choice do we have.

  18. Great post Ahnow. There is no other choice than to keep the faith.
    I view Mayo like my marriage. I have had good times, there are times when I have suffered but the main thing is that I am too far down the road to give up on it now.
    If we keep going to the well then eventually we will get to drink from it.

  19. Well said Ahnow. Next ball. Sport is littered with teams who dumped the champs and then got done themselves. Think of it, if Tyrone had beaten Dublin, our attitude would have been: ‘brilliant, they dumped Dublin, now we can dump them. Everyone would have feared Dublin in a final; no one feared Mayo.

  20. @catcol, an even better scenario would have been a covid weakened Tyrone team knocking out the favorites Kerry, Dublin and Kerry gone, wow that would have been a dream, hang on, isn’t that what happened.

    It could be a long time before it’s put on a plate like that again for Mayo.

  21. Des said something like “we’ll talk about Australia when there’s something to talk about”.
    To me, it sounds like he still hasn’t signed, but the plan is still that he will go if they can get everything sorted.

  22. Culmore
    In fairness to management he had a knee injury and probably had be taken off, it was the match up James got badly wrong for Padraic, he wasn’t the man for Daniel McCurry, dogs on the street knew that. He should have been put on Conor McKenna or Mattie Donnelly while Oisin or Lee should have marked Daniel McCurry for pace alone that’s why Tom O’sullivan of Kerry did so well on him. Also a mistake to not put O’Hora on Cathal McShane when he came on. O’Hora is suited towards the bigger physical forward, as he says himself he loves a battle. O’Hora is suited to players like Michael Murphy, Damien Comer, Ciaran Kilkenny, and Cathal McShane not small quick forwards like McCurry or Con O’Callaghan

  23. Tubberman – I heard that from Des but it was also interesting what Oisín said when asked can an all Ireland be won in the near future. He kept saying the future is bright for Mayo, a young team etc but never used the words we or us when talking about it. Gave the impression he’s no longer part of the panel.

    Maybe I’m reading way too much into it!

  24. Yep Wide Ball, I noticed that myself. Like you, I was wondering if I was over analysing it! But if he still saw himself as a Mayo player, he’d have said “we” when talking about the team.

  25. @Culmore.. Padraig O’Hora would probably have got an All Star had won the All Ireland, So would most of these as well,Paddy Durcan, Stephen Coen, Robbie Hennelly, Oisin Mullen, Kevin McLoughlin, and Tommy Conroy..I’m not 100% sure Mayo were going to get any more than 3 All Stars as poor runner’s up..Cork got Zero in the hurling..@Tubberman and Wideball,..I too was trying to read the body language and everything Oisin Mullen said on TV,..fair play to ye both, more observant than myself.

  26. Ah lads come on dont be torturing yerselfs that interview with Oisin was done weeks ago. Oisin is no longer part of the Mayo panel he’s attached to Geelong now. We had him for this years final and still managed to blow it. Best of luck to him he owes us nothing

  27. Why would the interview be done weeks ago? How could the results have been kept quiet that way… RTE hardly set up the studio and got Des and Joanne Cantwell in on multiple occasions?! Pretty certain it was all done last Friday.

  28. Maybe ye should think about this over the xmas holidays.
    Was there a full examination carried out of the shortcomings in the Mayo performance during the 2021 All Ireland final ?
    Very hard to correct the issues if management has not done this exercise.
    From looking back over the final have they learnt from it ?
    What is the plan for the road ahead?, is there a plan ?
    What was the plan for the final given it was no surprise that the Galway and Dublin matches were very flat for the 1st halves.
    Was training designed so that the team would finish the games stronger?
    Why did it take the team so long to get going in the big games ? Was training too heavy close to those big games ?

  29. I wish all those businesses and individuals who still have their “Good Luck Mayo” banners and tattered flags flying would show a bit of respect and take them down.

    It’s like having Christmas lights still up in July and is totally disrespectful to the flag.

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