Three factors that cost Corofin

1. Injured players

The lost through injury of team captain Kieran Fitzgerald was a huge blow.

Fitzgerald is a real leader on the side and a man with an All-Star and All-Ireland senior medal from 2001.

He also has eight senior county medals and his experience and talismanic presence was sorely missed.

Daithí Burke is a fine young player too, and he would have revelled in the close combat that was critical to the final outcome in the last quarter. He is great picking up breaks and driving on when in possession, and Corofin could have done with him, especially in the second half.

The highly experienced Gary Delaney was also unavailable with an injured shoulder and his erudite use of possession was sorely missed.

Stephen Rochford and David Morris were also missing.

Would they have been worth a point or two to their team, if they were available?

2. Standard of club football

in Galway

Corofin had not been tested all year - bar Milltown - in the local championship. When the standard jumped a few notches, they were not able for the step up. They struggled with Castlebar's intensity and power and Castlebar were in control of the game for long periods. They deserved the victory.

Likewise when Salthill faced St Brigid’s last year in the Connacht championship, they were unable to compete with a better and more finely tuned outfit.

Two questions. How many Galway senior clubs would be able to compete with the top clubs in Mayo? When was the last time a Galway club won the Connacht senior championship?

3. No goal-scoring assassin

Corofin need a really deadly inside man. Ian Burke scored 0-4 (3fs ), Joe Canney (0-1 ). That is not enough from play. They could do with a real goal poacher in the inside line.

If the club had the likes of a Padraic Joyce, a fit Michael Meehan, a Frankie Dolan, or a Cillian O' Connor over the past decade - they would probably have won at least one other All-Ireland club title.

The last two teams that beat them narrowly in semi-finals - Kilmacud Crokes and St Gall’s - went on to lift the Andy Merrigan trophy.

A team without one really potent inside man struggles.

Just ask Colm Cooper, who collected his eighth All Star last week.

Unless Corofin can find one, - they will always be in the - "a good side, but not a great side" category.


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