I think that was his point. John doesn’t believe that Galway are currently good enough to win an All-Ireland, particularly in terms of physicality and stamina, and felt they faded badly late on, particularly given that they had an extra player for the majority of the match, whereas the 1998 team proved to be at All-Ireland-winning level.
Personally I disagree with him and feel that while they probably won’t win it this year, they are now at a level where things are beginning to fall rapidly into place for them and they will not be too far away. An All-Ireland final is a realistic possibility for them for sure and if you get to a final you’re in with a chance. Dublin look to have slipped a bit and there’s a possibility that a team could win an All-Ireland this year without having to beat them.
Even defensively, I thought they put in a very good backs to the wall performance when it was needed late on. There is bags of football ability throughout their team in all lines and they’re building a good panel. They’ve notched up some really good wins over the last year and while they tanked against Tipperary in the quarter-final last year, I think that will prove to be a valuable lesson for them going forward. They are definitely around the level Mayo were at circa 2011, possibly 2012.