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Kerry v Dublin – 1955 GAA All-Ireland Football Final

The 1955 final attracted a record-breaking crowd to Croke Park, at over 87,000. Kerry, captained again by John Dowling, led from the beginning and, despite strong play from Dublin’s Kevin Heffernan, Jim Crowley, and Ollie Freaney (scorer of a late goal five minutes from the end), held onto the lead to win by 0-12 to […]

Cavan v Kerry – 1947 GAA All-Ireland Football Final

In 1947, as a commemoration of the centenary of the Great Famine and to revitalise Gaelic games in America, the All-Ireland Football Final was held in New York. The game was played in the Polo Grounds, home of the New York Giants baseball team. The scorching conditions were difficult for players and the unusually shaped […]

Kerry v Galway – 1959 GAA All-Ireland Football Final

The 1959 final attracted another huge crowd of almost 86,000 to Croke Park. This final is sometimes referred to as the ‘Seán Murphy final’ due to the outstanding display on the day by Kerry’s right half back. Despite the presence of legendary Kerry captain Mick O’Connell, Galway controlled midfield for long periods, with Mattie McDonagh […]

Dublin v Derry – 1958 GAA All-Ireland Football Final

This game marked the arrival of colour filming as well as Derry’s first appearance in a Senior final. They met a strong Dublin team that benefited from the wind in the first half and ran up a four-point lead, thanks particularly to the efforts (and scores) of their captain Kevin Heffernan and Ollie Freeney. Derry […]

Louth v Cork – 1957 GAA All-Ireland Football Final

Cork returned in 1957 to the final to play an unfancied Louth team, rarely featured at this stage of the competition. However, Louth would prove to be the better team on the day, captained by well-known musician Dermot O’Brien. Louth forwards Jim Rowe and Seán Cunningham in particular were in great form, as were midfielders […]

Galway v Cork – 1956 GAA All-Ireland Football Final

The 1956 final produced a closely contested encounter, played in wet conditions. On the day, Galway would prove to be the stronger team. They were captained by their goalkeeper Jack Mangan who we see here make several important saves, and the team featured two of the greatest players of their generation, Frankie Stockwell (who scored […]

Meath v Kerry – 1954 GAA All-Ireland Football Final

Peter McDermott became the only man to win an All-Ireland after refereeing the previous year’s final when he captained Meath to victory in 1954. Meath dominated this encounter combining a great defence – in particular full-back Paddy ‘Hands’ O’Brien – with more accuracy in front of the posts, from Mattie McDonnell, Paddy Meegan, Michael Grace, […]

Kerry v Armagh – 1953 GAA All-Ireland Football Final

This final attracted a new record attendance of over 86,000, with some permitted onto the pitch prior to the game to relieve the overcrowding. Though Armagh was in its first final, the game was far from one-sided and the Orchard County may well have won but for a missed penalty by Bill McCorry in the […]

Cavan v Meath – 1952 GAA All-Ireland Football Final

This was to be Cavan’s last appearance to date – something few could have predicted in 1952 given the county’s great tradition. The first game was played in terrible conditions. Cavan survived a late Meath revival and were only saved by a late point from Edwin Carolan. They then won the replay, again played in […]

Mayo v Meath – 1951 GAA All-Ireland Football Final

Mayo returned to Croke Park in 1951 to take their second All-Ireland in a row. This was a one-sided affair which Mayo, led by Seán Flanagan, dominated from the start, with great goals from Tommy Langan and Joe Gilvarry in the first half. Leading Meath players were Mattie McDonald, Brian Smyth and Peter ‘The Man […]

Mayo v Louth – 1950 GAA All-Ireland Football Final

This was Louth’s first appearance at this stage since 1912 and they were the better team for much of the game, with Nicky Rowe scoring the game’s first point and the team leading at half-time. However, Mayo increasingly took control of the game in the second half, though their victory was only assured by a […]

Meath v Cavan -1949 GAA All-Ireland Football Final

Cavan returned in 1949 to meet a strong Meath team that won its first Championship. The game attracted a record crowd of almost 80,000. Despite the best efforts of the formidable Cavan defence of John Joe Reilly, Tony Tighe and the skills of P.J. Duke and Peter Donahue (scorer of six points on the day), […]