Who will forget that epic final in 1997 when Monaghan ladies beat Waterford to capture the Brendan Martin cup for the second time. The players and team management on duty that unforgettable were
Team Manager : Michael Morgan
Selectors : Paul Swift
Other mentors : Anita Finnegan
Some of the 1997 panel of players expressed thier thoughts with Kevin Carney from the Northern Standard. Here’s what the rest of the squad of players say ahead of this Sunday’s clash with Cork
“I would like to wish you the Monaghan team the best of luck on Sunday. I was priviliged to have been manager of the Monaghan team in 1997 when Monaghan last won the All-Ireland title. I appreciate the commitment, effort and sacrifices you have all made to put yourselves into the position you are in. On Sunday all will be worthwhile and you will reap the rewards. The 1997 team have great memories of All-Ireland final day. Make your own memories on Sunday. And again the best of luck to the management team and all the players. ” Michael Morgan
“Best of luck to all the girls and management on Sunday. I know the hard work and effort that has gone in and I hope that this will be rewarded with the Brendan Martin cup coming back down to road to Monaghan” Mary Foy
“Best wishes to the Monaghan ladies. Believe in yourselves as ye have the talent to go the whole way. Enjoy this wonderful occassion” – Anita Finnegan
“A large number of this Monaghan panel know what it’s like to lose a Senior All Ireland final in Croke Park and going by the fitness levels, support play and work rate they’ve shown so far in the championship they’re determined not to let it happen this year. They play fast football and I wouldn’t like to be a Cork defender!! Good luck to the girls and management and hopefully all their efforts will be rewarded. ” Jenny Greenan
“I am very excited about the game. I believe there is an All Ireland in this team. There is huge experience and talent among the girls. It they all click on the day, then the Brendan Martin cup will be ours” Edel Byrne
“Best of luck girls. Winners are remembered. Losers are not. There is nothing as bad as talking abount the what ifs. You have one chance . Now go out there and show them who is the best ladies team in the country. Its a team effort. It takes everyone playing for each other to win games” Martina Gray
“Best of luck to all the girls on Sunday. Just remember to play as a team and work hard for each other for the full sixty minutes, and the cup will be yours. Also good luck to Catriona Brady and New York. See you all on Sunday” Mairead Kelly
“Best of luck to the girls and management team on Sunday. Hope all the hard work pays off. Enjoy the day. Also good luck to Catriona in the junior game” Davina Mc Caffrey
” I’d like to wish the girls all the best of luck in the all-Ireland final on Sunday, All Ireland finals don’t come around that often so when it does you have to grab it will both hands. Make sure when you leave Croke Park Sunday you have no regrets.” Anita O Reilly
“Best of luck girls.Control the nerves and believe you can win.Remember the mind is everything,if you can believe it then you will achieve it.I know you can do it.” Linda Gartland
” I would like to congratulate the County Ladies Senior Team, their management & their backroom team on reaching the Ladies All Ireland Final this Sunday. The entire group have worked extremely hard all year and this is evident in the results and great preformances they have produced in all c’ship matches to date. I wish them every success on Sunday and know that with the excellence both on the pitch and on the line they can bring the long awaited silverware back to the Farney county.” Jennifer Treanor
“The 2011 Senior Monaghan Panel & Management Team has been exceptional all year. However, Cork cannot be underestimated and would be considered the favourites for this Sunday’s clash, with a point to prove after being knocked out of last years All Ireland campaign by Tyrone. The Monaghan Panel have a point to prove this year also, 1997 seems like an eternity ago and so many great players have represented Monaghan during these 14 years and never captured an All Ireland Senior title. The 2011 panel are now representing all of those girls who have played for their County and never got to bring the Brendan Martin Cup back to Monaghan. If I could give any advice it would be to enjoy every last second of the entire experience, before, during and after, as it does not come around too often and most importantly leave nothing in the tank & give it your all, the Monaghan supporters will gladly carry every last one of you off the field after the game on Sunday! Best of luck to all involved.” Allison Treanor.
“Winning a senior all-ireland title is the best feeling you will experience in your life. Other happy events in your life may match that feeling but I promise you nothing you will ever experience will better standing in Croke Park at about 5.30 p.m. on Sunday knowing that you are all-ireland champions. The very best of luck. “Eileen McElvaney.
” I believe Monaghan are good enough to win, but they will need to play attacking football for the full hour. We are not that physical but we have great speed. Cork are beatable as we saw against Tyrone last year, and I do think that this is our year. Looking forward to a great match” Audrey O Reilly
“Opportunities like this don’t come easy or often, so the girls will have to grasp it with both hands. If they work hard for each other and believe in the talent they have, then they should come out on top” Linda Farrelly
“The present Monaghan team have worked hard this year and I get the impression they have a good team bond from number 1 to 30 along with their managers and backroom team. A lot of them have beendefeated in Croke Park before, so they will push themselves to the very end to achieve the delight and excitement of winning an All Ierland championship. Best of luck girls. It’s time to bring the Brendan Martin cup back to Monaghan ” Orla O Reilly
” It was a great honour for me to be part of All-Ireland winning teams and I know all the hard work and preparation that has been done to get to this stage. I want to wish the girls the best of luck on Sunday, enjoy the occassion, wear your jersey with pride and keep playing to the final whistle. The hard work is worth it.
Also I want to wish my former team mate,Catriona Brady, the best of luck in the Junior Final.” Ann Gavan
“To all the team. Wishing you the best of luck on Sunday. Keep focused and fight to the final whistle” Brenda Macklin
” Best of luck to the girls on SUnday. It’s an honour to wear the Monaghan jersey in Croke Park so wear it with pride and looking forward to seeing Brendan Martin cup coming back to Monaghan” Louise Mc Mahon
Being part of the 1997 panel myself, it has been great to listen to the thoughts of so many of my team mates. I know what winning the Senior All Ireland meant to us all back then, but it would mean just as much to us all to see the cup being returned to Monaghan
” The game of football needs passion and hunger to make champions. This Monaghan team have both. Wishing you all the best for Sunday ” Aine Gilsenan
I would like to thank all the girls who shared their thoughts with me for Sunday’s game. It was great remembering the good times we had and talking to many of the panel once again. Full interviews with Margaret Kierans and Angela Larkin, Monaghan’s 2 winning captains and Niamh Kindlon only player left on panel can be read in The Northern Standard. Interview with Catriona Brady, unfortunately wasn’t carried in full in Standard, but is here on the website for you to read.