Capital gains: How the GAA created a sporting superpower

GAA supporters around the country have long bemoaned the disproportionate funding directed towards Dublin. The GAA argues that it was merely rebalancing a perceived weakness in Dublin compared to its population size, but did it create a monster?

After six successive All-Ireland titles, can Dublin’s blue machine be stopped? Picture: Bryan Keane/Inpho

In 2017, John Connellan hung up his boots after more than a decade of playing inter-county Gaelic football.

Connellan had made his debut in 2006 when Westmeath were on the crest of a wave. They’d won a Leinster title in 2004 and there was a fervent belief that this was the start of a new dawn in the county’s fortunes.

He had turned down a possible career in football for this. He had played for ...