Football

Alan Brogan on how his change of game saved his Dublin career

Ciaran Bradley
Ciaran Bradley

17:03 22 Aug 2019

Dublin footballer Alan Brogan has spoken to Off The Ball about how his change of position saved his Dublin 2011.

Alan was in to promote the auction of a Dublin GAA-themed ball that will be auctioned to raise funds for Goal.

Attention turned to the thoughts of Pillar Caffrey - speaking on Off The Ball earlier this month - saying that he was most happy in their 2011 for Brogan, who the coaching staff had thought to be surplus to requirements.

But it was a change of position and thinking that ensured that Brogan remained a key component of Dublin's relentless march to footballing success, and he spoke of his memories of the change in mindset.

"It was a case of how I was going to fit into the team," said Brogan of the run-up to the Dubs' 2011 victory.

"Pat was changing things and after Kerry in 2009, Pat [Gilroy] drew a line in the sand and said that we were going to get our defensive structure right first.

"For six months, Pat wasn't even worried about what went on up the other end of the field.

"I was just speaking to Pat this morning about Mayo and that they haven't managed to sort out their defence in the last number of years, and we spoke about how we spent six months just concentrating on the defence. Six backs weren't allowed past the halfway line, one midfielder always stayed back - we got that part of our house in order first.

"For me, it was a change because I always played as an inside-forward when Pillar was in charge. I had to move out to centre-forward line and become a bit more of an all-rounder player.

"I probably became a better player for the team than in the early years, even though that is when I got more scores.

"I think another things for that team was that I was not at the level of Bernard [Brogan] or Gooch was as a score-getter. In a way, it benefited that I moved out to centre-forward and allowed Bernard a role closer to goal."

As for whether Bernard Brogan's rise piled on the pressure, his brother was philosophical about the situation.

"I was happy to move out to centre-forward, you got a bit more space out there - I was able to play that playmaker role.

"You probably get a bit more attention from defenders in the full-forward line so I was happy to move out there."

Brogan also recounted some words of advice to the current Dublin panel, from his experience of being asked questions about potential success in the run-up to an All-Ireland final.

"I often spoke about those toys where you pull the string in the back and it gives you a stock answer? You have got to be like one of those lads in the run-up to these games; give your stock answer and change the subject."

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Alan Brogan Brogan Dublin Dublin GAA GAA Pat Gilroy Pillar Caffrey

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