| 6.6°C Dublin

bye blue Eight-time All-Ireland winner Michael Darragh Macauley hangs up his inter county boots


Michael Darragh Macauley has hung up his inter county boots

Michael Darragh Macauley has hung up his inter county boots

Michael Darragh Macauley has hung up his inter county boots

MICHAEL Darragh Macauley has called time on his inter-county career with Dublin.

In a short, seven-word statement on his Twitter account this morning, the 2013 Footballer of the Year announced: ‘Sin é uaimse. Míle buíochas ó chroí’ (that’s it from me. Many sincere thanks).

Now 34, Macauley retires as one of the seven Dublin players in possession of eight All-Ireland medals, a record in Gaelic football.

His legacy as one of the most exciting players - and unique characters - in a golden period for Dublin football has long been secured.

Macauley’s time in blue stretches back to ‘Pillar’ Caffrey’s final year as Dublin manager but he established himself as an explosive force under Pat Gilroy, having initially been ignored.

With a basketball background, Macauley brought a unique skill set to the Dublin panel, as well as a sharp mentality.

Having been involved in initial trials conducted by Gilroy in November, 2008, he was overlooked by the new manager.

"Pat Gilroy picked eight midfielders for his initial squad, and I wasn't one of them," he recalled in an interview last year.

"In the club championship that year I had a target on the backs of all eight of those midfielders."

Along with the likes of Eoghan O’Gara, Mick Fitzsimons and Kevin McManamon, Macauley was brought into the squad before the beginning of the 2010 season and became one of Gilroy’s coaching ‘projects’.

He was thrust straight into an experimental Dublin team for the first match of the 2010 League, their first victory on Kerry soil in 28 years.

He immediately granted the Dublin midfield a hugely dynamic, forceful element and started there alongside Denis Bastick for the landmark 2011 All-Ireland victory over Kerry.

In 2013, he enjoyed his finest season as a Dublin footballer, forging a new partnership in the middle with Cian O’Sullivan and finishing the year as Footballer of the Year.

In 2017, he suffered damage to his ACL but successfully recovered, although his game time was limited.

Hampered by further niggling injury in recent seasons, he re-established himself in the team in 2019, although he started the replayed final on the bench, as Dublin clinched the mythical five-in-a-row.

Last year, a groin injury meant Macauley missed the League and though he did make the Dublin matchday 26 for last year’s All-Ireland final, he never saw any action.

Macauley retires with eight All-Ireland medals, ten Leinsters, five National League titles and twice having been awarded an All Star.

Online Editors

Top Videos