1971 All-Ireland Senior Football Championship Final

The 1971 All-Ireland Senior Football Championship Final was the 84th All-Ireland Final and the deciding match of the 1971 All-Ireland Senior Football Championship, an inter-county Gaelic football tournament for the top teams in Ireland.

1971 All-Ireland Senior Football Final
Event1971 All-Ireland Senior Football Championship
Date26 September 1971
VenueCroke Park, Dublin
RefereeP. Kelly (Dublin)

Galway were appearing in their first final since the three-in-a-row side of the 1960s.[1] Offaly, who had never won an All-Ireland title, had last contested a final in 1969.

Galway were favourites. Instead a shock occurred.[2] A Murt Connor goal gave Offaly their first title.[3] However, with the duration of certain championship matches increasing from 60 to 80 minutes during the 1970s before being settled at 70 minutes after five seasons of this in 1975,[4] this is the only All-Ireland final whose outcome would have changed if the time had remained the same; had it done so, the 1971 final would have ended in a draw.[5]

This was the first All-Ireland final attended by Martin Breheny. The weather on the day was later described by Breheny as consisting of a "steady drizzle" in the first half, followed by a "deluge of monsoon proportions" during the second half.[2]

It would be a further 21 years before another team won their first All-Ireland Senior Football Championship.[2]


  1. ^ Kenny, Tom (14 April 2011). "The men who first brought Sam to Galway". Galway Advertiser. Retrieved 14 April 2011. Then came the three in a row team who in 1964 beat Kerry by 0 – 15 to 0 – 10; in 1965 it was Galway 0 – 12 to Kerry 0 – 9, and in 1966 Galway 1 – 10 to Meath's 0 – 7. Offaly beat us in 1971 by 1 – 14 to 2 – 8, and in 1973, Cork beat us by 3 – 17 to 2 – 13.
  2. ^ a b c Breheny, Martin (31 August 2019). "'My 100th All-Ireland final - tales from the great occasions': From being nearly drowned on Hill 16 in 1971 to covering what could be a historic final, Martin Breheny reflects on the drama of it all". Irish Independent.
  3. ^ High Ball magazine, issue #6, 1998.
  4. ^ Breheny, Martin. "The Final Verdict: The Greatest of my Lifetime" in Martin Breheny's Greatest All-Ireland Finals. Irish Independent. 1 September 2018, p. 2.
  5. ^ Moran, Seán (11 September 2019). "Will time be on Dublin's side once more?". The Irish Times. Retrieved 11 September 2019. Another issue touched on by John O'Keeffe in his interview was the strange decision to extend senior championship provincial finals, All-Ireland semi-finals and finals to 80 minutes – which was an extra third on the previous duration of an hour. Curiously, it made little difference to the outcome of matches. Of the five finals plus 1972 replay played over 80 minutes – the length of a match was settled at 70 minutes from 1975 onwards – only the 1971 Offaly-Galway result would have been affected. Had it been played over an hour, it would have ended in a draw instead of Offaly's first All-Ireland triumph.

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