By Michael McMullan
ULSTER champions Derry have seven players nominated for football All-Stars including player of the year nominee Brendan Rogers.
In all, 13 counties are represented in the list of 45 nominees with Dublin leading the pack with 10 of their All-Ireland winning team nominated.
It was a summer that saw Derry push reigning champions Kerry all the way in the semi-final with Monaghan asking plenty of questions of Dublin.
Rogers, captain Conor Glass, young player of the year nominee Eoin McEvoy, Conor McCluskey, Gareth McKinless, Shane McGuigan and Paul Cassidy are the Derry contingent.
While Ulster final penalty hero Odhrán Lynch can count himself unlucky to miss out, there is an nomination for Farney ‘keeper Rory Beggan who is joined by attacking ace Conor McManus and dynamic defensive duo Conor McCarthy and Karl O’Connell in their quartet.
There are nominations each for Donegal (Brendan McCole and Oisín Gallen), Tyrone (Padraig Hampsey and Darragh Canavan) and Armagh (Andrew Murnin and Aidan Forker), taking Ulster’s total to 17.
Tyrone and Armagh reached the quarter-finals, the latter going out at the hands of Monaghan after a penalty shootout. Donegal were beaten by Tyrone in the last 12.
Westmeath’s Ronan O’Toole is the only player listed from a team that didn’t emerge from the new-look group stages.
Nine of last year’s All-Star team have been nominated again, including player of the year David Clifford.
Ethan Doherty has again been named for young player of the year – for players born in or after 2001 – and will have another Derry man – Eoin McEvoy – in the running.
Shane McGuigan and Brendan Rogers missed out of the team last year but will be fancied for inclusion.
With Rogers and Brian Fenton listed for player of the year and tipped to be selected as the midfield duo, the selectors’ flexibility could see Dublin skipper considered for a spot in defence.
The nominations and the final selected teams are chosen by a panel of Gaelic Games correspondents, in a meeting chaired by Uachtarán CLG. The player of the year awards will be voted on by the players.
Newbridge duo Conor Doherty and Paudi McGrogan had impressive years for Derry and would’ve been in many conversations for an inclusion. The latter’s loss was huge when he limped out of Derry’s defeat to Kerry.
Another two with impressive seasons were Louth’s Sam Mulroy and Sean Carrabine of Sligo played important roles in getting their counties to provincial finals. Mayo’s David McBrien and Ciaran Murtagh also shone during the summer.
The PwC All-Star teams will be presented with their awards at a gala event in Dublin’s RDS on Friday, November 17, an event shown live on RTÉ television.
PwC 2023 All-Star football nominees
Goalkeepers: Stephen Cluxton (Dublin), Shane Ryan (Kerry), Rory Beggan (Monaghan)
Defenders: Michael Fitzsimons, Brian Howard, Lee Gannon (all Dublin), Jason Foley, Tadhg Morley, Tom O’Sullivan, Gavin White (all Kerry), Gareth McKinless, Conor McCluskey, Eoin McEvoy (all Derry), Conor McCarthy, Karl O’Connell (both Monaghan), Seán Kelly (Galway), Aidan Forker (Armagh), Brian Stack (Roscommon), Pádraig Hampsey (Tyrone), Rory Maguire (Cork), Brendan McCole (Donegal)
Midfielders: Brian Fenton, James McCarthy (both Dublin), Brendan Rogers, Conor Glass (both Derry), Diarmuid O’Connor (Kerry), Diarmuid O’Connor (Mayo)
Forwards: Con O’Callaghan, Cormac Costello, Colm Basquel, Paul Mannion (all Dublin), David Clifford, Seán O’Shea, Paudie Clifford (all Kerry), Shane McGuigan, Paul Cassidy (both Derry), Oisín Gallen (Donegal), Conor McManus (Monaghan), Enda Smith (Roscommon), Darragh Canavan (Tyrone), Ronan O’Toole (Westmeath), Andrew Murnin (Armagh), Jordan Flynn (Mayo), Ben McCormack (Kildare), Damien Comer (Galway)
PwC Footballer of the Year nominees: Brian Fenton (Dublin), David Clifford (Kerry), Brendan Rogers (Derry)
PwC Young Footballer of the Year nominees: Eoin McEvoy (Derry), Conor Carroll (Roscommon), Ethan Doherty (Derry