I’ll chime in here regards what I thought was wrong with the 5+ years leading up to the promised land in 2011. A lot of the same players won the Leinster in 2002, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009 and out those winners there was a certain number who thought winning leinster made them superstars. In my humble opinion there were key players who played as individuals on the latter winning leinsters 07, 08 & 09 that waltzed through Leinster and then got a hell of a fright and faded when it really mattered outside the province.
They could be compared to players on a juvenile team that are clearly better than their opposition and knock over score after score eventually giving the opposition awful hidings. However when same players are put under pressure most of the time they dont have it and eventually cave, badly. If you ever see a juvenile team playing in division 4 or 5 and are obviously too strong for the division, yet think they are world beaters, but never progress to business ends of championship or even have a crack at a higher level league. This was Dublin in the leinster championship in the 2000’s.
Case and point being the 2009 match v Kerry. “We” scored a goal in the 2nd half and it eased the damage, however same player who scored clearly wanted to be hailed as a hero by their reaction to the hill. There was no bravado needed, but I guess winning leinsters against relatively poor opposition will do that.
If anyone wants a reminder of the scoreline it finished Dublin 1-07 Kerry 1-24. In 2006 even with Mayo “warming up at the hill”, again it spooked our “individualists” and as a team we shat ourselves, lets be honest.
Thankfully it dawned on a lot players soon after that the Dublin fanbase was quite tired at this stage of pointless leinsters, players swanning around town high fiving each other in GAP and Hollister, it was dude central - with nothing to show for it other than failings outside the province. My how the world has turned since. Long may it continue.