Jim McGuinness says Dublin are the only team not to join high-scoring football
Jim McGuinness, former Donegal All-Ireland winning manager and Sky Sports analyst, speaking at the launch of the broadcaster’s championship times yesterday, raised eyebrows when he said that although the football league matches high scoring were a surprise, he thought the only team not embracing this start was champions All-Ireland Dublin.
“It’s crazy how the game went. I don’t know, it’s just one way traffic now. This is the old Newcastle strategy where we outdo everyone. To be fair, the only team in the country in my opinion that doesn’t fully embrace this is Dublin.
“Getting back to the point I said earlier about myself and Kieran being at the games last year, Dublin were probably the most defensive team in the country. There is absolutely no doubt about that. They had 15 men inside their 65s almost every time the opposition had the ball.
“The difference is when Dublin gets the ball they are absolutely brilliant at keeping the ball. They are brilliant at leading the ball; they are brilliant in the transition; they are brilliant at beating their scores. So it whitens on everything.
“People just see what they put on the scoreboard and think, ‘they’re an amazing team,’ but what they don’t get credit for is that they’re an amazing defensive team; they defend for their life; they defend in number; they make contact; they put blows.
“Personally I wouldn’t read too much in the National League so far because it’s only three games and there are big scores going on, but then there are games that you think , “well, if this continues, some big team is going to be taken out ‘because a team with a serious pace is going to make three or four incisions and on a given day maybe all three or four [goals] will enter.
“Football is sitting on that kind of edge now and it’s going to be really interesting to see, for me, where that is going.”