Brian Mullins dead and obituary, ‘Dublin football legend – cause of death

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The Dublin GAA mourns the loss of one of its most esteemed figures following the death of legendary midfielder Brian Mullins. Mullins, 68, died today after a brief illness. One of the finest midfielders in football history, the St Vincent was instrumental in the revival of Dublin football in the 1970s under Kevin Heffernan.

He won four All-Ireland medals, his first at the age of 20 in 1974, when Dublin won Sam Maguire for the first time since 1963, beating Galway in the final. Earlier this year, he made his Dublin debut for the Leinster Under-19s at Ravenhill against Ulster.

A prolific athlete, he also played cricket for the province, winning three more All-Ireland medals as Heffernan rebuilt the team in 1976, 1977 and 1983. During this time, he survived a serious car crash in 1980 that kept him out for nearly two years with a severely fractured leg.

He recovered from three All-Ireland finals between 1983 and 1985, showing the same iron he often displays on the football field. The equally feared and respected Mullins brought a strong physical presence to Dublin, which allowed them to dominate their opponents.

But he was also a supreme footballer, combining great pitch technique with great distribution. Exclusive to GAA Subcutaneous from the biggest and best GAA team in Ireland; Brolly, Mullane, Hogan and Ó Sé to name a few.

In an era fondly remembered by Gaelic Games supporters, his ability to seize the game and decide the terms of the game has seen Dublin overstep the boundaries many times, not just changing the game in the capital. In this sense, Mullins is one of the leading architects. Mullins won nine Leinster titles in Dublin, in addition to two league titles, and was an All-Star in 1976 and 1977 when he was in his prime.

He was a five-time Dublin champion for St Vincent’s and the club’s crowning glory during his tenure was the All-Ireland title in 1976, when they beat Rose Commons. Mullins was briefly part of the Dublin management team with Sean Doherty and Tony Hanahoe in 1986 and has since been linked to Dublin positions at least twice, when Tommy Lyons and Paul Caffrey was appointed.

The remainder of his inter-county management experience comes from Derry, where he managed between 1996 and 1998 and won the league and Ulster titles, Derry’s last title before this summer. In recent years he has been deeply immersed in St Vincent as manager and chairman, and is UCD’s athletic director.

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