Pat Spillane's Top 40 Gaelic Footballers right now, Part 2

Mayo flyer Keith Higgins slots in at No 29 on Pat's list
Mayo flyer Keith Higgins slots in at No 29 on Pat's list

I’m often asked who I rate as the best footballer in the country. There are variations on that theme; like who is the best defender, best midfielder, best forward or the top 10 players in Gaelic football. Now that the championship is done and dusted for another year, I have decided to compile my list of the top 40 footballers in the country.

PART II, NO 30-21

30 - Ronan McNamee (Tyrone)

It was by no means a vintage year for full-backs, but he is one of the best around. Better still, he likes to counter-attack.

29 - Keith Higgins (Mayo)

Had a bad day against Dublin in the All-Ireland semi-final replay. Otherwise Higgins (main pic) had a flawless season.

28 - Rory O’Carroll (Dublin)

Quiet, calm and assured he rarely does anything spectacular. However, when he’s not playing the Dublin defence looks less than solid.

27 - Anthony Maher (Kerry)

A revelation this year at centre-field for Kerry! The gentle giant finally realised his potential. 

26 - Johnny Cooper (Dublin)

Athletic, tigerish and tenacious, he is the type of defender that every forward has nightmares about. 

25 - Colm O’Neill (Cork)

Cork’s star performer by a million miles!  Deadly accurate, he remains one of the game’s best corner-forwards. 

24 - Donnchadh Walsh (Kerry)

At long last he is getting the recognition he deserves. Intelligent and hard-working, he is a key figure in many of Kerry’s best moves

23 - Frank McGlynn (Donegal)

In a season in which the team slipped off the radar, McGlynn was magnificent with his trademark forward forays.

22 - Paul Flynn (Dublin, below)

Okay, he wasn’t anywhere near his best this year – though he was reasonably effective in the final – but when he’s on form he is the best wing-forward in the modern era.

21 - Steven O’Brien ( Tipperary)

Best midfielder in this year’s U-21 championship and Player of the Tournament in the Sigerson Cup.  Will be a key figure for Tipp if they are to progress.