Shield eludes city’s Gaelic football side – four would have been greedy

After three consecutive years as reigning champions, Copenhagen GAA have relinquished the coveted Shield trophy to the new champions, Amsterdam GAA. They went down battling earlier this month in the final European tournament of a long season in Limerick, the European Capital of Sport for 2012.

Copenhagen got off to a flying start with a comprehensive victory over the new kids on the block, the French side Niort. Notorious slow starters, the Danish club got off to a flyer and none more so than forward Sean Coogan, with 2-2 to his name. (In gaelic football, a shot under the bar, a goal, is worth three points, and a shot over the bar, a point, just one, so a score of  2-2 is eight points in total.)

Next up were Scandinavian neighbours and close rivals Gothenburg, and everyone was expecting a closely fought affair. The Swedish outfit have had the upper hand in recent years and Copenhagen captain John Lambert urged his charges to double their efforts in this encounter. 

Unfortunately the Danish side never managed to settle in this match and, despite going into a two-point lead just after the break, were unable to press  home their advantage. Gothenburg rallied and, inspired by a rather fortuitous late goal, ran out winners by a two-point margin.

Now the Danish side had their backs up against the wall and were up against the fancied Belgium B side. Nothing less than a victory in this game would be enough to send them through to the quarter-finals. The well-drilled Belgian side were frustrated time and time again by the battling Copenhageners. A superb sideline point by Phil Murray inspired the team and Coogan was at hand to whip over a late match-winning point. A narrow 2-2 to 0-3 victory for the men from København. The doom and gloom of the previous defeat was forgotten and Copenhagen GAA were now in the hat for the quarter-finals.

The team everyone wanted to avoid at this stage was the Amsterdam side, who had won the last three European tournaments and were unbeaten in 2011. Copenhagen hadnÂ’t done themselves any favours by losing to Gothenburg and were pulled out of the hat with the Dutch champions. The game got off to a cagey start, before Amsterdam started to put some scores on the board. Copenhagen missed theirs and were always playing catch-up against a fit and fast-moving side. The Dutch side ran out convincing winners on the scoreboard, despite the best efforts of the Copenhagen lads.

Over the course of the tournament there were some notable displays for the Copenhagen side. Lambert, the captain, led by example and put over some fine scores. Thomas Bering, Rory Lehmann, and Mark Hassett were solid in defence, ‘human dynamo’ Kenny Grogan never stopped running in the middle of the park, and up front Sean Coogan showed some fine scoring form. The team can be satisfied with their victory over the Limerick tournament winners Belgium B and their runners-up medals in the European Shield overall.

Copenhagen will now enjoy a welcome break until the spring of 2012, when they will begin to plot the downfall of the new champions Amsterdam and  attempt to wrestle the silverware back.

Anyone interested in coming along and giving gaelic football a try (there are male and female teams), please contact GAA are always on the lookout for new members, and whatever their nationality, they will always get a warm welcome from a very international group of players.

Join the debate – join us on Twitter or Facebook, or leave a comment below.

  • How internationals can benefit from joining trade unions

    How internationals can benefit from joining trade unions

    Being part of a trade union is a long-established norm for Danes. But many internationals do not join unions – instead enduring workers’ rights violations. Find out how joining a union could benefit you, and how to go about it.

  • Internationals in Denmark rarely join a trade union

    Internationals in Denmark rarely join a trade union

    Internationals are overrepresented in the lowest-paid fields of agriculture, transport, cleaning, hotels and restaurants, and construction – industries that classically lack collective agreements. A new analysis from the Workers’ Union’s Business Council suggests that internationals rarely join trade unions – but if they did, it would generate better industry standards.

  • Novo Nordisk overtakes LEGO as the most desirable future workplace amongst university students

    Novo Nordisk overtakes LEGO as the most desirable future workplace amongst university students

    The numbers are especially striking amongst the 3,477 business and economics students polled, of whom 31 percent elected Novo Nordisk as their favorite, compared with 20 percent last year.