"When Gearóid McKiernan is 10/10, it's not really considered because you're just used to it" 10 months ago

"When Gearóid McKiernan is 10/10, it's not really considered because you're just used to it"

Write Cavan off at your peril.

Tasked with winning three games to get back to the Ulster final, Cavan have been pushed and kicked on the long road back and here they are. Back.


Back knocking on the door.

Back, as if they never went away.

Cavan don't go away, you see.

Not when they're seven points down and Monaghan are ripping them apart. Not even when they're 10 points behind to Down and the ground is heavier than it has ever been in, this, their fifth game in five weeks.

They take the hits and they keep coming back at you. They hang in there. They keep swinging and, 230 minutes of tough battle later, they've returned to the Ulster final.

If Cork win three games this season, they'll be in an All-Ireland final. Cavan have already won three and the semi-final still eludes them with Donegal in their way, defending the Anglo Celt Cup. They're well used to it by this stage but the inequality is always worth highlighting.


But Mickey Graham continues to get the best out of them. The manager re-adjusts his team when he has to. The blue jerseys open up and charge forward like a tsunami when they're put to the pin of the collars. And Gearóid McKiernan keeps giving Gearóid McKiernan performances.

There were a lot of stand-out displays as Cavan shell-shocked Down with a second half offering of unrelenting attack. Padraig Faulkner was like a man possessed. Killian Clarke was pure power. Thomas Galligan caused chaos when he went inside and then Conor Madden was doing everything. Kicking monsters from a standing position, splitting the posts from the sideline, winning long, dirty ball, dispossessing the 'keeper. Whatever way you wanted it, Madden was giving it.

All the while, Gearóid McKiernan was having the sort of game that would be remembered for a generation if it was any other player. Except, when it's McKiernan, you come to get used to it.

On The GAA Hour, Cavan's heroics were hailed and the exceptional level of consistency from McKiernan was highlighted by Conán Doherty.

"Big McKiernan... I know Madden got man of the match, that's who everybody was talking about and he was spectacular. But Gearóid McKiernan...

"He's on a different level. When he has these 10 out of 10 games, we don't even consider it anymore because you're just used to him winning eight kickouts and kicking 50 metre scores. 

"It's unbelievable what he's bringing to Cavan."


Cian Ward continued the praise for McKiernan.

"He's a colossus for Cavan," Ward said.

"It wasn't just against Down where the team looks to him but, by God, the amount of kickouts he wins is just unbelievable. 

"With himself and Galligan in there and then the powerful presence of Clarke and Faulkner, Cavan have some serious, serious footballers. 

"When the underfoot conditions are heavy and it needed that bit of raw, physical presence, Cavan have it in spades."

Listen to the full show here or get The GAA Hour on any podcast app.