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Fifteen selected for Clare’s greatest senior football team (1990 – 2020)

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*Munster SFC winning captain of 1992, Francis McInerney

Clare’s greatest senior football team of the past three decades has been picked.

Readers of The Clare Echo have been voting to select the county’s greatest team to have played senior championship between 1990 and 2020 for the past week.

A total of 31,420 eligible votes were cast in an exercise that alerted many that the task of choosing a team is not an easy one. Votes submitted after 5pm on Tuesday (April 21st) were not counted. The forty five person shortlist had been compiled by sportswriter Seamus Hayes, Clare Echo’s Sales Executive Niall O’Connor and Head of Sport Páraic McMahon.

With the option of selecting players in different positions through AN OTHAIR, the power was left firmly in the hands of the public when voting opened. The amount of votes received by two players saw them make the team in positions for which they were not nominated. This resulted in Noel Roche and Martin Daly edging out Doonbeg duo Kieran O’Mahony and Gerry Killeen for a spot on the team as they were given more votes.

In a tight battle for the goalkeeper spot, 1,705 votes separated Joe Hayes and James Hanrahan with the Lissycasey native getting the nod.

Clare’s only football All Star Seamus Clancy received the most votes in the full-back line where he is joined by Meelick’s Kevin Harnett and former International Rules player Noel Roche.

Kieran ‘Nail’ O’Neill had the highest tally of any individual nominated in defence, he secures the number seven jersey and stands side by side Gordon Kelly and Barry Keating in a half-back line that would take no prisoners.

At midfield, ex county captain Gary Brennan and Ger Quinlan of O’Currys get the nod.

Captain of the historic 1992 side, Francis McInerney held off the challenge of Enda Coughlan and Eoin Cleary to be named at centre-forward. He is flanked by Denis Russell and Martin Daly.

Doonbeg’s David Tubridy received the highest percentage of a vote for his position (74.1%). He assumes control on the edge of the square with the St Senan’s Kilkee pair of Ger Keane and Michael O’Shea (RIP) on either side.

St Senan’s Kilkee have the highest amount of representation on the team with four club members, Doonbeg and Lissycasey have two apiece with the remainder of the side made up of players from Corofin, Meelick, St Josephs Miltown, St Josephs Doora/Barefield, Éire Óg, O’Currys and Clondegad.

Clare’s greatest senior football team (1990 – 2020):

1: Joe Hayes (Lissycasey) (1877)

2: Seamus Clancy (Corofin) (1423)
3: Kevin Harnett (Meelick) (925)
4: Noel Roche (St Senan’s Kilkee) (955)

5: Barry Keating (Éire Óg) (1087)
6: Gordon Kelly (St Josephs Miltown) (1049)
7: Kieran O’Neill (St Josephs Doora/Barefield) (1639)

8: Gary Brennan (Clondegad) (1255)
9: Ger Quinlan (O’Currys) (824)

10: Denis Russell (St Senan’s Kilkee) (914)
11: Francis McInerney (Doonbeg) (822)
12: Martin Daly (Lissycasey) (894)

13: Ger Keane (St Senan’s Kilkee) (783)
14: David Tubridy (Doonbeg) (1009)
15: Michael O’Shea (St Senan’s Kilkee) (991)

Páraic McMahon is Head of News & Sport with The Clare Echo. The Newmarket-on-Fergus native also writes for national papers including The Irish Examiner, The Irish Independent and The Irish Times along with doing work for RTÉ, Today FM, TheJournal.ie and The42.ie. A graduate of Mary Immaculate College, Páraic was previously employed by The Clare Herald and Clare FM. If you have a story, tip or some feedback for him then send an email to - paraic@clareecho.ie

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