Author Topic: Top 10 forwards of past 40 years - a Board poll - Open until 21st April 2017  (Read 5159 times)

longballin

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It's irrelevant how good or bad the team around him were, you can tell the quality of players like Forde even when they are in poor sides. And the bottom line is Coulter just wasn't that great.

A good footballer but not a great one. Not even in the top 5 in Ulster in his era.

Coulter was a great forward.

He certainly was.

Champion The Wonder Horse

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It's irrelevant how good or bad the team around him were, you can tell the quality of players like Forde even when they are in poor sides. And the bottom line is Coulter just wasn't that great.

A good footballer but not a great one. Not even in the top 5 in Ulster in his era.

Coulter was a great forward.

He certainly was.
Coulter would have been full forward on the 91 and 94 teams, but he'd still be behind Greg Blaney, Linden and James beag in terms of greatness. It's unlikely that any county (outside Kerry) has produced four of the top ten forwards of the last 40 years.

thewobbler

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It's been mentioned a few times on here that it's not possible to compare forwards from successful counties with those from mediocre counties.

I reckon it is, so long as you try to apply a sensible initial criteria - one which would have eff all to do with playing style, and everything to with outcome.

Pick a player and then over the course of his career, evaluate whether his county regularly exceeded (or at least achieved) expectations. If so, then you can logically observe that his ability MIGHT have had the positive influence that an all time great should have had. That's the objective bit. After that, it's subjective whether he was one of the primary causes for the positive performance of his county. But at least there's a baseline in place.

---

I love Benny Coulter dearly. He was a bright shining light in a time of darkness for Down; one of the few reasons to pay in to watch Down. But using my criteria he doesn't make it as the cold hard facts is that the team he played in underachieved apart from one season.

There'd be a similar story at play for Paddy Bradley and his little brother, for as wonderfully talented as they were, they never really dragged Derry to a higher pedestal.

Someone mentioned Vinny Murphy above. He's a cut below Colin Corkery. So talented, but didn't deliver the big different often enough. They don't deserve to be any higher than Donnacha O'Connor or Tony Boyle (fantastic players, but not quite at this level).

Funnily enough Joe Brolly would be a genuine contender for the list. His presence gave physically strong but workmanlike Derry sides the ability to trade blows with the most talented sides in Ireland. Is that not the marker of a great forward?

That's said, he's an absolute twat for his recent attack on Gooch. The one player who ensured Kerry had chance of being the "team of the Noughties" was him.

On a side note. How Stevie O'Neill is a constant in these discussions but Owen Mulligan is an absence, I'll never understand. Stevie should have been a better player. He was bigger, stronger, quicker, meaner, and could kick a bal twice as far. But Tyrone needed Mulligan too to play at the top table.

---

my 10:

Brogan Bernard
Canavan Peter
Cooper Colm
Doyle John
Flynn Paul
Joyce Padraig
McConville Oisin
McDonnell Steven
Moran Andy or Linden Mickey. Genuinely can't decide which county would have been less relevant without their appearance
Murphy Michael

downjim

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Benny Coulter is Ulsters top championship goal scorer ever , and he played on some brutal teams. Down have had some great forwards and Benny is the best I have seen. Down GAA Goat

Taylor

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It's irrelevant how good or bad the team around him were, you can tell the quality of players like Forde even when they are in poor sides. And the bottom line is Coulter just wasn't that great.

A good footballer but not a great one. Not even in the top 5 in Ulster in his era.

Coulter was a great forward.

He certainly was.
Coulter would have been full forward on the 91 and 94 teams, but he'd still be behind Greg Blaney, Linden and James beag in terms of greatness. It's unlikely that any county (outside Kerry) has produced four of the top ten forwards of the last 40 years.

Be quiet for God sake. Are you saying Down should have 4 players in the top 10 for last 40 years??

4 from Down & 4 from Kerry so by your reckoning only 2 of the following would make it...........PTG, Frank McGuigan, SON, Mugsy, Oisin, Colm ORourke, P Joyce. Ciaran McDonald etc etc etc

An Fhairche Abu

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Fitzgerald Maurice
Canavan Peter
Cooper Colm
Joyce Padraic
O'Sullivan Declan
Donnellan Michael
Brogan Bernard
McDonnell Steven
Flynn Paul
O'Neill Stephen

five points

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Blaney Greg
Canavan Peter
Connor Matt
Cooper Colm
Fitzgerald Maurice
Linden Mickey
McHugh Martin
Sheehy Mikey
Spillane Pat
Brogan Bernard

Harold Disgracey

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My pick, I admit there's a slight Armagh bias:

Connor Matt
Canavan Peter
Fitzgerald Maurice
Spillane Pat
Sheehy Mikey
Egan John
McDonnell Steven
Cooper Colm
Tompkins Larry
McConville Oisin

rosnarun

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What's the obsession with forwards anyway?
Top 10 midfielders of the last 40 years would be more interesting.
Although we can pretty much ignore the last 10 years.
because after all the pushing and shoving scores win games . many teams who were otherwise excellent just could not score enough and got no where .
Im thinking mayo mid to late 90's in particular
If you make yourself understood, you're always speaking well. Moliere

redhandefender

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Canavan
Gooch
Greg Blaney
Frank McGuigan
Maurice Fitzgerald
Bernard Brogan
Mickey Linden
Tony Boyle
Stevey O'Neill
Stevey McDonnell

Slight ulster bias but those are the ones I enjoyed the most

Champion The Wonder Horse

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It's irrelevant how good or bad the team around him were, you can tell the quality of players like Forde even when they are in poor sides. And the bottom line is Coulter just wasn't that great.

A good footballer but not a great one. Not even in the top 5 in Ulster in his era.

Coulter was a great forward.

He certainly was.
Coulter would have been full forward on the 91 and 94 teams, but he'd still be behind Greg Blaney, Linden and James beag in terms of greatness. It's unlikely that any county (outside Kerry) has produced four of the top ten forwards of the last 40 years.

Be quiet for God sake. Are you saying Down should have 4 players in the top 10 for last 40 years??

4 from Down & 4 from Kerry so by your reckoning only 2 of the following would make it...........PTG, Frank McGuigan, SON, Mugsy, Oisin, Colm ORourke, P Joyce. Ciaran McDonald etc etc etc

No that's not what I'm saying. I'm saying anyone seriously considering Coulter should have him behind the other three I named and there's no way Down has had four of the best 10 forwards of the last 40 years. If you had checked my selection, you'd see one Down man, Blaney (#8). And only one from your list also, Canavan (#2).

I would contend that it is you who should be quiet for God sake.

Taylor

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It's irrelevant how good or bad the team around him were, you can tell the quality of players like Forde even when they are in poor sides. And the bottom line is Coulter just wasn't that great.

A good footballer but not a great one. Not even in the top 5 in Ulster in his era.

Coulter was a great forward.

He certainly was.
Coulter would have been full forward on the 91 and 94 teams, but he'd still be behind Greg Blaney, Linden and James beag in terms of greatness. It's unlikely that any county (outside Kerry) has produced four of the top ten forwards of the last 40 years.

Be quiet for God sake. Are you saying Down should have 4 players in the top 10 for last 40 years??

4 from Down & 4 from Kerry so by your reckoning only 2 of the following would make it...........PTG, Frank McGuigan, SON, Mugsy, Oisin, Colm ORourke, P Joyce. Ciaran McDonald etc etc etc

No that's not what I'm saying. I'm saying anyone seriously considering Coulter should have him behind the other three I named and there's no way Down has had four of the best 10 forwards of the last 40 years. If you had checked my selection, you'd see one Down man, Blaney (#8). And only one from your list also, Canavan (#2).

I would contend that it is you who should be quiet for God sake.

Phew - good man.

That's a better, clearer and more coherent statement


Il Bomber Destro

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It's been mentioned a few times on here that it's not possible to compare forwards from successful counties with those from mediocre counties.

I reckon it is, so long as you try to apply a sensible initial criteria - one which would have eff all to do with playing style, and everything to with outcome.

Pick a player and then over the course of his career, evaluate whether his county regularly exceeded (or at least achieved) expectations. If so, then you can logically observe that his ability MIGHT have had the positive influence that an all time great should have had. That's the objective bit. After that, it's subjective whether he was one of the primary causes for the positive performance of his county. But at least there's a baseline in place.

---

I love Benny Coulter dearly. He was a bright shining light in a time of darkness for Down; one of the few reasons to pay in to watch Down. But using my criteria he doesn't make it as the cold hard facts is that the team he played in underachieved apart from one season.

There'd be a similar story at play for Paddy Bradley and his little brother, for as wonderfully talented as they were, they never really dragged Derry to a higher pedestal.

Someone mentioned Vinny Murphy above. He's a cut below Colin Corkery. So talented, but didn't deliver the big different often enough. They don't deserve to be any higher than Donnacha O'Connor or Tony Boyle (fantastic players, but not quite at this level).

Funnily enough Joe Brolly would be a genuine contender for the list. His presence gave physically strong but workmanlike Derry sides the ability to trade blows with the most talented sides in Ireland. Is that not the marker of a great forward?

That's said, he's an absolute twat for his recent attack on Gooch. The one player who ensured Kerry had chance of being the "team of the Noughties" was him.

On a side note. How Stevie O'Neill is a constant in these discussions but Owen Mulligan is an absence, I'll never understand. Stevie should have been a better player. He was bigger, stronger, quicker, meaner, and could kick a bal twice as far. But Tyrone needed Mulligan too to play at the top table.

---

my 10:

Brogan Bernard
Canavan Peter
Cooper Colm
Doyle John
Flynn Paul
Joyce Padraig
McConville Oisin
McDonnell Steven
Moran Andy or Linden Mickey. Genuinely can't decide which county would have been less relevant without their appearance
Murphy Michael

I have to strongly disagree with you on Paddy Bradley.

Paddy Bradley, for me, is probably the best forward to come out of Ulster since Canavan.

You look at the scoring records in Ulster and he's the top scorer in Ulster Championship history and I'd say his scoring record form play would also be the top. His intercounty career effectively lasted 13 years which is probably considerably less than his other rivals in that era. His intercounty career also spanned a golden era where Ulster sides were heavily dominant at All Ireland level. Tyrone, Armagh and Donegal collected 5 All Irelands between them in that time, Down appeared in an All Ireland final and Fermanagh and Derry appeared in semi finals with Monaghan being very close to making one on a couple of occasions.

He was pretty much a one man team in that time, around the time Dessie Mone was keeping Gooch in his pocket, he had to mark Bradley in a qualifier game against Derry. Bradley took him for 2-05 from play, I think he had walked off the panel in the week building up to the game but it pretty much told the story on how reliant Derry were on him. He also gave Dublin a torrid time in an All Ireland qf about 7 or 8 years back. I think he brought that Derry team as far as any man could have, if the rest of the footballers in Derry had half the commitment and drive as Bradley had then maybe they would have a couple of Ulster titles or more big Championship days out in Croke Park over the past 20 years.

He was as heavy a scoring forward as I can recall.

The Stallion

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I would tend to agree on Bradley, although I think McDonnell and O'Neill were very good too. The other thing about Bradley is he wasn't especially quick, strong or good in the air yet he still destroyed teams in his pomp.

Il Bomber Destro

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I would tend to agree on Bradley, although I think McDonnell and O'Neill were very good too. The other thing about Bradley is he wasn't especially quick, strong or good in the air yet he still destroyed teams in his pomp.

He wasn't the biggest or the quickest but I felt his strength was exceptional, he was excellent at holding off the most stickiest of markers and getting himself time and space.

It was a golden era for Ulster forwards and O'Neill and McDonnell were top drawer as well as a few more but I'd probably have Bradley over them as he didn't have the same level of quality around him yet the stats speak for themselves.