The loneliness of the travelling Cork footballer – Jarlath
IT MUSTN’T be a lovely experience being a Cork footballer, despite the three in a row of National leagues and an All-Ireland two years ago, not to mention the two recent Munster titles and a team that has contested most of the last ten All-Ireland semi-finals.
Any other team with that sort of success rate would generate a bandwagon of hats, flags and rosettes that would do justice to Dublin city any August.
But no. Once again, less that 500 die-hards made the journey to the capital to see the footballers yet again lift the League title. I’d say there’s about ten times that number of Cork folk resident in the capital which begs the question did anyone from Cork travel at all?
During the trophy presentation, I watched Conor Counihan closely as he looked around at the completely empty stadium, cold and windswept and I was wondering was he pondering was it worth the hassle putting in such effort for so little appreciation?
One of the main reasons teams keep going is the thought of how much it means to the supporters and nothing makes you run that little bit faster, or jump that little bit higher than the thought that out there are people who are doing it all with you in their heart and that it means so much to those who follow you all round the country.
The fact that this sort of support just does not exist in Cork makes the efforts of their county team even more admirable.
In the semi-final, they broke the record for poor support with about 250 souls making the journey, but last Sunday was even worse because it was a national final, the second most important final in the country for senior inter-county footballers.
The full story is in the current issue of Gaelic Life, published Thursday May 3. Buy your copy now, in your local newsagent or online, by clicking the subscribe button on this page