WATCH: Seven Milestone Games Where Donaghy Was A ‘Star’

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Legends…Ogie Moran and Kieran Donaghy celebrate after Kerry beat Mayo in the All-Ireland semi-final replay in 2014. Photo by Dermot Crean

It’s a tough job picking highlights from the great Kieran Donaghy’s career in green and gold.

He transformed Kerry’s fortunes in 2006, bagged two goals in the 2007 final, gave a stirring display in their loss to Dublin in 2011, saved their season in 2014 and supplied the next generation with his lay-off to David Clifford in the Monaghan game this year.

Here’s a selection of milestone games for the big man…

1. The arrival of ‘the new Bomber’…

Jack O’Connor took a gamble by naming Donaghy in the full-forward line in an All-Ireland qualifier against Longford, but boy did it pay off!

Kerry won 4-11 to 1-11 on that sunny July day in Killarney with Eoin Brosnan bagging three goals, but all everyone could talk about coming away was Kieran Donaghy and, at the time, fanciful talk of how he could be the ‘new Bomber’.

Continued below…

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2. The Armagh goal (2006)…

“Who’s crying now baby?” It was this iconic goal in the All-Ireland quarter-final that was a seismic moment for Kerry football.

Armagh had broken Kerry hearts four years earlier and were favourites to beat Kerry, but Donaghy’s fire burnt the orchard down…

3. A Mayo mauling…

Kerry already were off to a blistering start when this happened in the eighth minute of the All-Ireland final of 2006. Even that early on, it was the killer blow that laid Mayo out. His performances earned him the Player of the Year.

4. Taking care of Cork…

Opportunism at its best. His forward partner, Colm Cooper, was imperious for Kerry in the All-Ireland final of 2007, but it was Donaghy’s guile and strength for his two second-half goals that truly did for Cork. See his goals on 10:00 and 13:00 below in the video….

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5. Courage under fire…

It’s never nice looking back at a loss, but it was one of his best days in a Kerry shirt.

Kieran was struggling with form when he played in the 2011 All-Ireland final against Dublin, but he stood out that day playing his heart out for Kerry.

The final will be remembered for Stephen Cluxton’s winning free, but Star’s point to level the game in the last minute of the game was probably the best of his career. Just look at it..

6. The second act…

In the summer of 2014, Kieran Donaghy was not starting for Kerry who had not won an All-Ireland title in five years.

They looked dead and buried against Mayo in the semi-final when he was introduced off the bench. He caught a high ball, laid it off to James O’Donoghue and the goal saved their season. He scored a goal in the replay, Kerry won an epic and set up another final…

7. Whaddaya think of that?

His last All-Ireland final win in 2014 is perhaps his sweetest.

In a dour game of football,¬†Donaghy pounced on a bad goalkeeping mistake in the second half and his goal set Kerry up for a victory over Donegal. It was his post-match, Brolly-baiting interview that will be remembered most from that day…

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