Robbie Brennan in his days when he managed Dunboyne.

Brennan & Co play the waiting game as all eyes are on Glen

Kilmacud Crokes' manager Robbie Brennan and his players may have to do it all again and try and win the 2023 All-Ireland Club SFC final for a second time.

Brennan, who has close connections with Dunboyne, watched from the Croke Park sideline last Sunday as the Crokes defeated Watty Grahams Glen in the final - or so they thought.

As soon as the final whistle sounded a controversy started to be whipped up that has gained in intensity over the past 48 hours.

Kilmacud Crokes breached Rule 6.44 (b) (i) of the GAA’s Official Guide by finishing the game with more than 15 players on the pitch but, according to the Irish News, the GAA will not investigate the matter unless Glen make a case.

The penalties for breaching Rule 6.44 include the awarding of the game to the opposing team, for the game to be replayed, or a fine.

Brennan, who lives Dunboyne, played for and managed the local club St Peter's forging a close connection with the black and ambers after playing for Kilmacud Crokes, his home club.

He subsequently became manager of Crokes and guided them to the 2018 Dublin SFC title with joint manager Johnny Magee before they went on to defeat Dunboyne in the Leinster Club.

Brennan was once more at the helm for Kilmacud as he guided them to this year's All-Ireland final.

It looked like they had achieved their ambition of landing the All-Ireland crown when the full-time whistle sounded on Sunday but now a doubt hangs over the win, casting a shadow over what should have been regarded as one of Kilmacud's finest days.

Last year Kilmacud Crokes lost the All-Ireland Club final when they conceded a stoppage time goal in extra-time against another Ulster side Kilcoo. It was a cruel way to lose out and Brennan & Co were no doubt driven to make up for that loss this time around. It looked like they did just that on Sunday but now that victory too is in doubt.

Former Derry player Joe Brolly has said the failure of the GAA to leave the decision up to the club and not make a decision itself is an example of the "rank cowardice" by the governing body.

It seems now only way the All-Ireland club football final will be replayed is if Watty Grahams Glen lodge an objection to the GAA. It is entirely up to the Derry club to make that call.

Glen have said they are "extremely disappointed" that the GAA will not review the potential rules breach from their AIB All-Ireland club final defeat to Kilmacud Crokes without the club first submitting an official objection.

They have until the 3.30 tomorrow (Wednesday) afternoon to object, otherwise, Kilmacud Crokes' victory will stand - but surely it's up to the GAA to decide what should happen.

The understanding is, however, that should the Derry club object, they would be guaranteed a replay.

Glen manager Malachy O'Rourke had indicated in his post-match press conference that an objection wouldn't appeal to him on a personal level, though it is understood that the final decision will be made by both the management of the team and the players together.

In an incident that has close connections to the Kilmacud/Glen debacle, St Peter's (who Robbie Brennan played for at the time) lodged an objection after Navan O'Mahonys had defeated them in a SFC semi-final in 2005.

Only three substitutes were allowed in extra-time - compared to five in ordinary time - and Dunboyne, who lost the match by 1-12 to 1-14, submitted an objection to the Meath County Board. It was another case where the decision to lodge an objection was left up to the club.

"We would prefer if we didn't have to lodge an objection and instead that action would be taken by the county board because of the breaching of a rule," said Paul Reilly the St Peter's PRO at the time.

St Peter's were granted the game and they progressed to the final where they defeated Blackhall Gaels.

Ironically St Peter's, with Robbie Brennan playing at full-forward, lost out to his former club Kilmacud Crokes in the Leinster Club SFC, 1-14 to 0-3.

Now Brennan must wait to see if the Crokes will have to face Glen again.

In 2010 Meath defeated Louth with the help of a Joe Sheridan goal that simply shouldn't have been allowed - but it was by Tyrone referee Martin Sludden.

It was unfairly left up the Meath players to decide in subsequent days whether they should replay the game. It wasn't Croke Park who decided the result should stand.