Bryan Cullen: Extra game will stand to Dublin

Bryan Cullen believes Dublin have a distinct advantage over Kerry thanks to their extra game against Mayo last weekend.

The 2011 All-Ireland winning captain, who retired from inter-county football in January, says Kerry should be concerned by their layoff since the All-Ireland semi-final win over Tyrone.

“I’d much rather have two weeks than four weeks (to the final),” he said. “Four weeks is a long time to be sitting there preparing for a football game.

“You can play As versus Bs and I’m sure they are hugely competitive down in Killarney as they are in Dublin but I think that replay Dublin had with Mayo was the best thing they ever had.”

Cullen lost three times to Kerry before Dublin broke the county’s nine championship game winless run against them four years ago. He senses Kerry have more respect for Dublin than they had for them in the last decade.

“Certainly, when we were playing Kerry previously, I think they fully expected to beat us. With the couple of victories we’ve got under our belt, maybe they’re not taking us for granted as they did back in that period.”

Cullen admits he’s not a fan of the Leinster championship at the moment because of Dublin’s dominance. “I don’t enjoy watching those games. They are non-contests. Dublin are far ahead of anything that is in Leinster.

“Is it up to the GAA to assist them or is it up to the other counties to simply improve? That’s the debate. But as a spectator now, I’m looking forward to All-Ireland quarter-finals onwards.

“That’s a privileged position to be in. When I started watching Dublin, winning a Leinster championship match was a big deal. It’s a pity that’s gone now because I used to play in front of full houses in Leinster championships matches and they were great occasions. It is unfortunate that is no longer the case.”

  • Bryan Cullen was speaking at the announcement of Odeon Cinemas’ nationwide free screening of Sunday week’s Dublin-Kerry All-Ireland final. Tickets are available at gaa.tickets.ie

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