As the foremost county in Gaelic games, both in terms of recent success – they’ve won the last four All-Ireland senior football titles and six of the last eight – and population (and therefore market), Dublin’s kits tend to be bespoke.
Whereas most of O’Neills’ recent output has seen county teams given strips in a near-identical template, the Dubs have special outfits. Their newest kit, launched for 2019, is the only one to have a collar and, while the semi-tone on the sleeves has been used by other teams, the decision to have it on the shorts too was a new departure.
Historically, Dublin have had darker blue goalkeeper jerseys but in recent times white has been on the rotation too and that’s the case with the new offering. For the first time, there are matching shorts, too.
Dublin’s first opponents in this year’s national football league, Monaghan, wear white and so goalkeeper Evan Comerford had to wear a training top. By the time of their clash with another white side, Tyrone, captain Stephen Cluxton was back in goal with a proper alternative top – a reversal of the outfield shirt but now jarring with the goalkeeper shorts.
As the only county to wear sky-blue jerseys, Dublin haven’t really needed change kit in the modern era. The all-black worn against Cavan in the 2014 All-Ireland U21 semi-final marked a new departure and when they played the same opposition in the 2017 national league, a navy reversal of the usual top was used.
O’Neills have begun to experiment with change options though and the Dublin hurling team took to the field for their league game with Laois wearing a new black kit.
As the practice is for the the goalkeeper’s jersey to be part of a set with the rest, it too was white.
The black was also worn by the hurlers in their league quarter-final against Tipperary (the counties normally don’t change) and against the green of Limerick.
The football team called upon it for the first time against Cavan, who switched to white. While Dublin goalkeeper Evan Comerford began the game wearing the matching white top, it wasn’t suitable and he had to change at half-time.
Obviously, the other white shirt wasn’t an option either and the navy would have clashed with the black. So it was that, for the second half, he wore an unnumbered ‘home’ jersey, with the black shorts and socks.