The Drive for Five is real! Dublin and Kerry's match two weeks ago shows who the 2019 GAA All-Ireland final belongs to
Kerry has been warned by practically everyone outside of The Kingdom that they have left the opportunity of being crowned 2019 All-Ireland champs far behind them by not aiming one more shot at Dublin’s jugular in the drawn game two weekends ago.
Seven minutes of added time were played in the game, and Peter Keane’s young men did not attempt one more shot at goal in that period – instead, maddeningly choosing to retain possession in their own half. It’s true! The spine of the Dublin team that has seen them dominate football this decade (and poise to take the throne as the greatest team of all time) was pretty much absent in that 1-16 each draw. Cian O’Sullivan was absent through injury, and Brian Fenton and Ciaran Kilkenny in the middle and half-forward line respectively had their poorest ever performances in blue.
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Of those three can form a working spine on Saturday evening then there is no doubt about it, Jim Gavin and Co. will be center stage in the greatest celebrations ever witnessed in Croke Park. A five in-a-row champion!
Like mostly everyone else, I cannot see Kerry further stalling or cancelling such a celebration. This is a game that Dublin should now know exactly how to win, and it is hard not to imagine the margin of victory being somewhere in the three to five points region.
The lads in Gavin’s dressing room have enormous room for improvement from the first game, and Kerry?
Paul Geaney and David Clifford can do more, no doubt about it, and if Keane uses the towering figure of Tommy Walsh as an early and late target man (starting him, and then reintroducing him for the final quarter) certainly Kerry can make it a tough 70-plus minutes for Dublin’s last line of defense.
This is a game that will come down to ambition.
Dublin know what they have to do, and Kerry did not finish off what they knew they could do first time of asking.
Read more: Kerry want more at All-Ireland final replay