Dublin and Ballyboden St Endas defender Robbie McDaid has praised the consistently high standards in Jim Gavin’s camp.
The Boys in Blue are currently on a 32-game unbeaten run in the League and Championship, stretching back to March 2015.
They are going for a FIFTH Allianz League title in-a-row this spring, and will also aim for a third consecutive All-Ireland crown later this year.
McDaid was part of the Dublin panel that won all before them in 2016, while he also claimed Dublin, Leinster and All-Ireland honours with his club Ballyboden St Endas in 2015/16.
He is, therefore, well placed to discuss what makes a team successful.
And he says, from a Dublin point of view, the high standards set by the panel and the management are the basis for their success.
“We have a good panel there of lads all well capable of playing to the standard and everyone just drives each other on”, McDaid told 98FM Sport’s Derek Ryan.
“They will be quite fiercely competitive in regards to that- everyone pushing for spots, just wanting to get that jersey and play those games”.
Dublin boss Jim Gavin continually talks of the “standards” in the camp.
But McDaid says the panel is as responsible for keeping those standards as much as the coaches.
“Management would put something forward to us, but it’s the players that drive those standards.
“It really is player driven in relation to that.
Dublin won the O’Byrne Cup earlier this year, without the 2016 All-Ireland winning panel, who were away on their end of season holiday.
McDaid admits Dublin’s ability to keep on winning, even with so many big names missing, shows the unbelievable strength in depth they have.
“A good few of the lads from the O’Byrne Cup are in training with us, and it’s them driving it.
“It really is competitive in that nature.
“Many of the O’Byrne Cup lads have stepped up- and stepped up into the National League as well.
From McDaid’s point of view he has won it all- Dublin, Leinster and All-Ireland crowns with Ballyboden St Endas and League, Leinster and All-Ireland titles with the Boys in Blue.
His next aim, he tells 98FM, is to get into the Dublin side on a consistent basis.
“That’s where you want to be ultimately. When you do all the training, it’s the pitch where you want to be.
“You do your best to try win that jersey, and when you do it’s all about pushing on and not letting go of it.
Gavin showed in the All-Ireland final win over Mayo last year that he trusts the whole of his panel to do a job, making three big calls for the replay.
He dropped Bernard Brogan, Michael Darragh MacAuley and David Byrne for that game, with Michael Fitzsimons, Paul Mannion and Paddy Andrews all coming into the side.
“We’re all there for a reason”, says McDaid, of that brave Gavin decision.
“It’s so competitive that any one of those 30 lads can step up when called upon.
“It was a big call making those changes. But the lads were well able to step up, which they did, thankfully.
McDaid also talks about his own stunning 12 months between October 2015 and October 2016, his ambitions for the year ahead and his hopes for further club success.
Listen to the interview in full below:
McDaid was speaking as his club Ballyboden St Endas announced H&K International as their major sponsor for the next three years.