1973 All-Ireland Senior Football Championship Final

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1973 All-Ireland Senior Football Final
1973 All-Ireland Senior Football Championship Final programme.jpg
Event1973 All-Ireland Senior Football Championship
Date23 September 1973
VenueCroke Park, Dublin

The 1973 All-Ireland Senior Football Championship final was a Gaelic football match played at Croke Park on 23 September 1973 to determine the winners of the 1973 All-Ireland Senior Football Championship, the 87th season of the All-Ireland Senior Football Championship, a tournament organised by the Gaelic Athletic Association for the champions of the four provinces of Ireland. The final was contested by Galway of Connacht and Cork of Munster, with Cork winning by 3-17 to 2-13.

The game was expected to be an open affair and so it proved, with Cork taking the initiative early on. Dinny Long's centre was punched against the crossbar by Jimmy Barrett; however, 19-year-old Jimmy Barry-Murphy was alert to the rebound and pounced for a well-taken goal after just two minutes. With their confidence boosted, the Cork forwards settled quickly and scores came freely. At the other end of the field, Cork's John Coleman curbed the threat of Galway captain and centre-forward Liam Sammon. Cork led at the interval by 1-10 to 0-6.

The second half produced the unusually high tally of 4-14 with each side landing 2-7. Cork were slow to find the target after the interval; however, once Dinny Long scored a difficult free from under the Hogan Stand and Ray Cummins followed suit from the other side they appeared to be coasting to victory. A Galway revival saw them cut the margin to just three points when Tom Naughton scored a goal, but Cork's response was controlled and efficient. Ray Cummins steadied Cork with three points in quick succession before setting up Jimmy Barry-Murphy for the clinching goal. Johnny Hughes pulled one back for the men from the West; however, it was as close as they got and the Leesiders closed out the contest with their third goal, scored by Jimmy Barrett.[1]

The 1973 All-Ireland decider holds the record as the final which produced the highest cumulative score with 5–30 or 45 points. At the time Cork's tally of 3–17 was the highest in a final; however, Dublin bettered this by one point four years later when they recorded 5–12 against Armagh. Galway's tally of 2–13 remains the highest by a losing team.[2]

Cork's All-Ireland victory was their first since 1945. The win gave them their fourth All-Ireland title over all and put them joint sixth on the all-time roll of honour along with Kildare and Tipperary.

Galway's All-Ireland defeat was their second as part of a hat-trick of All-Ireland defeats between 1971 and 1974.

Due to the similarity of the colour of their jerseys a change was necessary. This was done in a bid to aid television viewers who may have been watching in black and white. A coin toss decided that Cork would wear a reversal of their usual jerseys. To help prepare for the All-Ireland final, Cork trained in the jerseys of Tyrone, whom they had beaten in the All-Ireland semi-final.[3]



Galway Colours of Galway.svg2-13 - 3-17Colours of Cork.svg Cork
Attendance: 73,308
Referee: J Moloney (Tipperary)
GK 1 Gay Mitchell
RCB 2 Joe Waldron
FB 3 Jack Cosgrove
LCB 4 Brendan Colleran
RWB 5 Liam O'Neill
CB 6 Tommy Joe Gilmore
LWB 7 Johnny Hughes
M 8 Willie Joyce
M 9 Jimmy Duggan
RWF 10 Maurice Burke
CF 11 Liam Sammon (c)
LWF 12 Michael Rooney
RCF 13 Johnny Coughlan
FF 14 Tom Naughton
LCF 15 Morgan Hughes
RCF Frank Canavan
RWF Colie McDonagh
John "Tull" Dunne
GK 1 Billy Morgan (c)
RCB 2 Frank Cogan
FB 3 Humphrey Kelleher
LCB 4 Brian Murphy
RWB 5 Kevin Jer O'Sullivan
CB 6 John Coleman
LWB 7 Con Hartnett
M 8 Dinny Long
M 9 Denis Coughlan
RWF 10 Ned Kirby
CF 11 Declan Barron
LWF 12 Dave McCarthy
RCF 13 Jimmy Barry-Murphy
FF 14 Ray Cummins
LCF 15 Jimmy Barrett
CB Séamus Coughlan
LWF Donal Hunt
FB Mick Scannell
Donie O'Donovan
  • 80 minutes.
  • Replay if scores level.
  • Three substitutes allowed.


  1. ^ "Gallant Galway meet a Better Team". Galway Advertiser. 27 September 1973. Retrieved 5 August 2015.
  2. ^ Breheny, Martin (17 September 2010). "1973: Barry-Murphy on the double". Irish Independent. Retrieved 5 August 2015.
  3. ^ "When boys of '73 served up a treat". Irish Examiner. 21 August 2009. Retrieved 5 August 2015.