County-by-county phrase guide to the GAA Championship season 5 years ago

County-by-county phrase guide to the GAA Championship season

The heady mix of freshly cut grass and man sweat.

Irish people don't put much faith in weather men or women to tell them when summer comes.

Instead, we have an in-built sensor hard-wired inside our brains since 1884 that tells us exactly when summer arrives and it's called Championship Sunday.

It's that glorious afternoon in mid May when the strains of the Sunday Game theme tune wafts out from houses across the country, as the roast of boiled spuds, raw spuds, mashed spuds and gravy is laid in front of the family.

Every GAA fan in the country begins the season with optimism that this year could be our year. Unless you're from New York or London, when there is no such thing as hope.

So we've donned our best Sigmund Freud hat and beard and delved deep into the psyche of every single GAA county fan in Ireland to reveal their mindset ahead of the championship.


GAA Hurling All Ireland Championship Semi-Final, Croke Park, Dublin 17/8/2014 Cork vs Tipperary Cork fan Con Hurley  Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Ryan Byrne


'Cork for the double'

This phrase reflects how Cork people feel every day of their lives. World domination is only a puck of a ball away. Sometimes the phrase 'Cork for the quadruple' can be heard from camogie and ladies football fans too. Avoid these people. They will only make you angry.


'Yerra shur 'twas only the league'

Kerry people are like late blooming flowers.

No sign of them all Spring and every other result in the calendar is discounted unless it comes with dollops of sun cream and a Choc Ice melting into their green and almost gold jersey.


'If we still had John Mullane, we'd win Munster'

They love a cult hero down in the south east and John Mullane is the most cult of all the heroes. If he went into making blaas out of crystal, covered in flour, he'd nearly be canonised.

Allianz Hurling League Division 1 Final, Semple Stadium, Co. Tipperary 3/5/2015 Waterford vs Cork John Mullane and his daughter Abby celebrate with Waterford supporters on the pitch after the game Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Cathal Noonan


'Will ye f**king drive it into them?'

A short passing game won Clare an All-Ireland title in 2013 but yet still the traditional Clare hurling fan wants nothing more than a big booming 'Brian Lohan' style clearance into the sole full-forward. It's not going to happen. Not on Davy's watch. Next.



'We just can't lose to Kilkenny again'

Maybe it's too many cans of Clonmel champagne but natives of the Premier county are steadfast in their belief that this year they will finally beat Kilkenny. Just don't mention Hawkeye, Lar, or Henry.

GAA Hurling All Ireland Senior Championship Final Replay 27/9/2014 Tipperary Tipperary fans Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Lorraine O'Sullivan


'We need to go back to the old style Limerick hurling'

Get in their faces, get in hard for every tackle. And we don't mean hard, we mean HARD.

That style of hurling has helped Limerick to exactly zero All-Ireland's in the last 40 years. But they need to get back to it.


Electric Ireland GAA Hurling All Ireland Minor Championship Semi-Final, Croke Park, Dublin 17/8/2014 Limerick vs Galway A supporter covers up during the game Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Cathal Noonan


'We won't fear the Dubs'

Meath fans want one one thing to make their summer dreams come true. A win over Dublin in Croke Park. And every year it doesn't happen. But every year, it's going to happen.


Wexford GAA fans

'You can't bate our new potatoes, strawberries or hurlers'

Oh but you can. And their summertime dream is typically crushed like a plastic punnet under a black and amber jackboot.


'We just need to get them back to Aughrim'

He's a good player, but can he do it in an All-Ireland qualifier under lights in Aughrim? Wicklow fans think they can beat anyone in their own backyard. They beat Armagh but lost to Sligo in recent years. Go figure.

GAA Football All Ireland Senior Championship Round 2A 5/7/2014  Wicklow vs Sligo General view Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Donall Farmer



'I'm never calling it the Netwatch'

Carlow fans are angry. They have put up with it during the league but no more.

On the banks of the River Barrow, people have seen their stadium renamed and a doctor erased from history. At least that anger will distract them from an early exit in the All-Ireland qualifiers


'The Dubs are afraid of us - that's why they won't play us in Pearse Park'

The Leinster council have kept Dublin in Croke Park for the last nine years because they know what awaits in regional venues around the province.

Bernard Brogan and Diarmuid Connolly must be kept safe from the savages outside the Pale.


'We're waiting in the long grass and then'll we shock them.'

No grass could be long enough to hide Laois.

GAA Football All Ireland Senior Championship Semi-Final, Croke Park, Dublin 31/8/2014 Dublin vs Donegal Dublin fans on Hill 16 Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/James Crombie


'Kerry... bleedin' Kerry...'

Dublin fans can see no obstacle to winning another All-Ireland football title. Least of all from them culchies from the south. Just the way them cute hoors want it.


'Bring back Micko'

The summer of 1998. 62-year-old Mick O'Dwyer at the helm. Magic. Get over it, lads. You're in Division Three now.


'The referees are always riding us'

Don't ever mention Joe Sheridan or 2010 in the presence of a Louth man or woman. If you do then do not make direct eye contact and back slowly out of the room. The county haven't gotten a free since.


GAA Hurling All Ireland Senior Championship Final Replay, Croke Park, Dublin 27/9/2014 Kilkenny vs Tipperary A Kilkenny supporter celebrates Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Donall Farmer


'He'll be back for championship' 

He won't. No matter how many times they wish it to happen they're staying retired. Henry's reign is over and so are the other lads'. Have you not seen their pot-bellies? Ye'll be grand.


'If we get out of Leinster we have a chance'

Because life gets so much easier when you have to face teams from Munster or Ulster or a Galway in the All-Ireland qualifiers?


'If we keep it tight for 50 minutes we've a chance'

That's the spirit. Do a Derry on it. Nirvana awaits.


Connacht GAA Football Senior Championship Final 15/7/2012 Sligo  A Sligo fan waves a flag Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/James Crombie


'We'll win nothing with him at midfield'

If you're not Eamonn O'Hara, you're no use to anyone.


'We should at least reach an All-Ireland semi final'

John Evans is a victim of his own success. Give the Rossies an inch and they're expecting nine miles now.

Connacht GAA Football Senior Championship Final, MacHale Park, Castlebar, Co. Mayo 13/7/2014  Mayo vs Galway A young Mayo supporter reacts after Mayo miss a chance Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Donall Farmer


'Mayo for Sam'


The bigger the lie the more likely people are to believe it. Every year the lie gets bigger and the more Mayo get sucked in. Don't believe the hype.


'Hopefully the weather will be nice'

Because what else can they look forward to? Another World Record 'Rock the Boat' attempt?



'If we could just put two performances back to back we'd be unstoppable'

The word you're looking for is inconsistent. And unreliable. And infuriating. And underachieving.


GAA Football All Ireland Senior Championship Semi-Final, Croke Park, Dublin 25/8/2013 Mayo vs Tyrone Tyrone supporter David Gamble Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Cathal Noonan


'Mickey has to go '

It's totally sensible to blame the manager for the lack of success Tyrone have endured since 2008.

It has nothing to do with retirements, or a lack of talented young players coming through or the toughest provincial championship around.


'McGeeney has them flying in training'

Armagh will probably be the fittest team in Ireland after eight training sessions a day. It bodes well for the Olympics in 2016.


'The young lads will mature this year.'

Any day now.

GAA Hurling All Ireland Senior Championship Final Kerry vs Donegal Supporters Preview, Buncrana, Co. Donegal 19/9/2014 Donegal fans Adrian McMyler and John Porter outside An Tuath Nua Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Presseye/Lorcan Doherty



'Our blanket is better than yours'

If you can't stand the heat of summertime, get out from under the double-duvet.


'When's the club championship starting?'

They have more pressing matters up in Derry.


'Casement Park is a big loss to us '

And all those players who left the panel too.

Ulster Senior Football Championship Final Replay 27/7/2008 Fermanagh  A dejected Fermanagh fan   Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/James Crombie


'We peaked too soon'



'We could sneak the title'

The Mourne men always fancy themselves as the aristocrats of Ulster. That superiority complex means every year they think they could win the province. Even though they couldn't beat Roscommon in a leauge final.


'Will we get another year out of Dick'

The last man to play football in the 1990's is the Energizer bunny of the GAA. Our summer's will not be the same without him.

2011 TG4 All Ireland Ladies Junior Football Championship Final, Croke Park 25/9/2011 Wicklow vs New York A New York fan celebrates after the game Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/James Crombie  *** Local Caption ***

New York


'Will someone bring us over some Taytos? And real chocolate?'

The Exiles can only hope for some serious smuggling when the Connacht championship begins.


'We'll go on a mad session if we get a qualifier at home with the exchange rate'

We want to be on that Ryanair flight.