Kerry V Monaghan 1930 All-Ireland Football Final.

Kerry’s toughest game in the year of 1930 was the Munster final, not against their old enemies Cork, but a rejuvenated and determined Tipperary. The Munster Final was played at Tipperary Town to give Tipp that added advantage.

Tipperary were serious about this Munster Final, so serious that the entire team spent three weeks special training at Mullinahone.

It was a typical wet drizzly rainy day all morning and during the entire game, making the pitch and the ball very slippery and glassy. Both sides made many mistakes and found it hard to get scores. There were only three points in the first half, 1-1 to Kerry 0-1 to Tipp. Both scores were from Sheehy.

Early in the second half Tipp’s Mullins shot from 20 yards and the unsighted Johnny Riordan couldn’t stop the ball from going into the net.

Tipp came surging back in search of victory but Barrett held his ground and kept them at bay. When Tipperary started to tire John Joe Sheehy took the lead for Kerry with a point from a free and then Jackie Ryan blasted an unstoppable shot into the back of Tipperary’s net.

Kerry were now playing like a run-away train, Con Brosnan, the man from Moyvane, caught a long ball pass and kicked a tremendous shot with his left foot that gave Weston no chance. Kerry proved too good for Tipp and won 3-4 to 1-2.

The Kerry team had gelled together like no other team of the past and every player were fighting for their positions because at this time the County of Kerry was full of enthusiastic talent.

Kerry’s next game was the All-Ireland semi final against Mayo. Kerry had beaten Mayo easily the previous year and were red-hot favourites to win again, which they duly obliged even though they had to come from behind.

Mayo had improved 100% from the previous year and where leading Kerry by a point at half time. The pep-talk at the break made them realise that they had to raise their game if they were to beat a lively Mayo team.

As soon as the ball was thrown in Kerry didn’t waste any time in taking the fight to Mayo. John Joe Sheehy equalised with a great point and then scored a blinding goal. Kerry played spectacular football and the plucky Mayo team disintegrated in front of the Kerry attacks. Kerry had won another semi-final 1-9 to 0-4.

Now only Monaghan Stood between Kerry and a three in the row of All-Irelands. Monaghan shocked the whole of Ireland when they beat a good Kildare team 1-6 to 1-4. Up until then Monaghan was a completely unknown entity.

Kerry took no chances and players went into special training in Tralee for two weeks before the All-Ireland. Then a sad note was played, on the Friday evening before the All-Ireland the great Dick Fitzgerald past away and the Kerry officials had to decide whether to play the match or hand it to Monaghan.

This was a very difficult decision as Dick Fitzgerald was an icon in County Kerry, the stadium was named after him in Killarney and the people in Killarney stated that out of respect the game should not be played.

However at another meeting on the Saturday morning it was decided that it would be a more fitting memory to Dick Fitzgerald to go to Croke Park and bring back the Sam Maguire to Kerry, it would be what he wanted himself.

Chopin`s Dead March was played by the Artane Boys Band and the huge crowd paid their respects to the great GAA man.As soon as the game started The Kerry footballers paid their own respects to Dick fitzgerald.

The early part of the game gave no indication of the rout that has to follow, infact it was Monaghan who raised the first flag. John Joe Landers equalised with a beautiful point a good few minutes later and up to this point there was exceptional end-to-end football.

But the great Moyvane man Brosnan kicked a pass to Ryan who tapped the ball between the posts and further points from Landers and Ryan gave Kerry the lead 0-4 to 0-1. Monaghan hit back with another point from McConnon, but that was the end of Monaghan’s campaign.

Landers hit a glorious goal and after this there was simply no stopping the Kerrymen with further points from Sheehy and Landers Kerry went in at half time 1-6 to 0-2.

Kerry piled on the pressure in the second half and Monaghan had nothing to give in retaliation and it turned out to be the most one sided All-Ireland final ever Kerry easily winning 3-11 to 0-2. Sam was heading south again.

The 1930 All-Ireland Champions: Johnny Riordan, Dee O’Connor, Joe Barrett, Jack Walsh, Joe O`Sullivan, Tim O’Donnell, Con Brosnan, Bob Stack, Miko Doyle, Jackie Ryan, Eamon Fitzger, John Joe Landers, John Joe Sheehy (Captain), Ed (Pedlar) Sweeny.


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