We're down to the last-four in the race for Sam Maguire and already talk as to who’ll feature on the respective team-of-the-year-lists is taking place.

As in previous seasons, the final XV from whatever brains trust will no doubt be dominated by the sides that are involved at the business end of the championship.

In something of a departure, it would be interesting to see who would make up a 2015 side, minus those from Kerry, Tyrone, Dublin and Mayo – who will all be engaged in semi-final battles over the next two weekends

Here’s my selection:


1 Paul Durcan (Donegal)

The Donegal custodian gets the nod to man the posts. He couldn't be faulted for Mayo's two goals in the All-Ireland quarter-final, but made some crucial stops from Tyrone's Peter Harte and Ciaron O'Hanlon from Armagh as his side safely negotiated the tricky route to the Ulster final.

Durcan is moving to Qatar in 2016 and will not be available for Donegal's Allianz League campaign, though manager Rory Gallagher is hopeful he may return for the championship.


2 Paul Sharry (Westmeath)

The St Loman's player was a steady influence in Westmeath's march to the Leinster final.  

3 Ryan Wylie (Monaghan)

Tenacious and hard working sums up Wylie's contribution to the Monaghan cause this year. A strong performance in the Ulster final sees him fill the number three berth.     

4 Niall Cassidy (Fermanagh)

The Roslea defender more often than not broke forward with real intent and kicked some fine points into the bargain.

5 Karl O’Connell (Monaghan)

The sight of O'Connell storming up the field to score a tidy point was one of the standout moments as the Farney took the Ulster title back from Donegal. The Tyholland clubman's trademark runs had provincial rivals in a tizzy.   

6 Kieran Martin (Westmeath)

Westmeath football found its voice again in 2015 when reaching the Leinster decider. After a league campaign that resulted in relegation, manager Tom Cribbin had harsh words to say. His team responded and one of those leading the charge was Kieran Martin.

The Maryland clubman's surging runs from the half-back line saw him score 2-03 in that memorable win over Meath in the provincial semi-final.

7 Frank McGlynn (Donegal)

It was another good season for McGlynn and while many of his team-mates failed to shine in the Ulster final, he, at least, put in a decent shift.


8 Thomas Flynn (Galway)

Cork's Alan O'Connor and Eoin Donnelly of Fermanagh were strongly considered for the second midfield berth, but the nod goes to Galway's Tom Flynn. 

9 Neil Gallagher (Donegal)

The Glenswilly clubman may have not have hit the same level that saw him win an All Star in 2014, but was still at the heart of many Donegal moves that led to crucial scores.  


10 Odhrán Mac Niallais (Donegal)

After making his mark in the 2014 campaign, Mac Niallais really eastablished himself over the last few months. His sheer athleticism and footballing intelligence will be key as Donegal look to competitive again in 2016. 

11 Michael Murphy (Donegal)

He may not have always excelled, but Murphy's undoubted class shone through when he kicked a long-range point that settled Donegal's nerves against Derry. And then there was that tremendous catch, turn, bounce and point against Galway, followed by a leap into the sky to palm the ball down to the in-rushing Ryan McHugh for a goal that set Donegal on their way to victory.  

12 Colm O’Neill (Cork)

Cork were seconds away from winning the Munster final. If they had hung on, they'd have been favourites to reach an All-Ireland semi-final. Their journey, however, ended with a rather tame defeat to Kildare. That said, Colm O'Neill can be happy with his contribution to Cork's summer. 

13 Tomás Corrigan (Fermanagh)

Corrigan stepped up to nail crucial scores as Fermanagh came from behind to pip Roscommon in the qualifiers. He caught the eye even more with his 1-07 that subsequently saw Westmeath crumble. His lobbed goal in that game was superbly dispatched.

14 Sean Quigley (Fermanagh)

The smile on Quigley's face after that 'shove' on Stephen Cluxton tells only part of the story. Quigley's accuracy in front of the posts may have deserted him at times, but when you consider his 14-point haul against Antrim in the qualifiers and then converting a crucial penalty against Roscommon, there is no denying his pivotal role in getting Fermanagh to the All-Ireland quarters.   

15 Conor McManus (Monaghan)

Even when Monaghan were struggling against Tyrone, McManus's marksmanship kept them in touch. All through the summer, the Clontibret native made a habit of kicking spectacular points. He should be in the running to make the All Star team.