Colm Boyle joins list of decorated All Stars with no All-Ireland medal as he announces his retirement

Mayo’s Colm Boyle celebrates at the final whistle with Stephen Coen (Image: ©INPHO/Tommy Dickson)

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With four All Stars, the newly-retired Colm Boyle sits alongside his now former teammates Lee Keegan and Keith Higgins as Mayo’s most decorated players in the history of the scheme, while Colm Cooper (Kerry), Peter Canavan (Tyrone) and John O’Leary (Dublin) are the only other players to have won four or more awards in years where their county didn’t win the All-Ireland.


In the 50 years of the All Stars, only 34 footballers have won four awards or more.

Of those, 31 of them had their All Star prospects bolstered by playing on an All-Ireland winning team at some point in their careers. The three exceptions are all Mayo men – Colm Boyle, Lee Keegan and Keith Higgins, each with four awards though Keegan will likely collect a fifth next month.

Pat Spillane holds the record for most football All Stars with nine, though only two of those came in seasons where Kerry weren’t All-Ireland champions – 1976 and ‘77.

The next most decorated All Star footballer is Spillane’s fellow countyman Colm Cooper with eight but six of those came in years where he didn’t have a Celtic Cross to accompany the individual momento.

That’s a record, though the Mayo three are joined by John O’Leary and Peter Canavan in having achieved it four times with 10 players having done it three times.

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Kerry legend Colm 'Gooch' Cooper
(Image: ©INPHO/Oisin Keniry)

Colm Cooper (Kerry)6 – 2002, ‘05, ‘08, ‘10, ‘11, ‘13. Also won All Stars in 2004 and ‘07 when Kerry were All-Ireland champions.

Peter Canavan (Tyrone) 4 – 1994, ‘95, ‘96, ‘02. Also won All Stars in 2003 and ‘05 when Tyrone were All-Ireland champions.

John O’Leary (Dublin) 4 – 1984, ‘85, ‘93, ‘94. Also won an All Star in 1995 when Dublin were All-Ireland champions.

Keith Higgins (Mayo) 4 – 2012, ‘13, ‘14, ‘17.

Lee Keegan (Mayo) 4 – 2012, ‘13, ‘15, ‘16.

Colm Boyle (Mayo) 4 – 2013, ‘14, ‘15, ‘17.

Eugene ‘Nudie’ Hughes (Monaghan) 3 – 1979, ‘85, ‘88.

Harry Keegan (Roscommon) 3 – 1978, ‘80, ‘86.

Eugene McKenna (Tyrone) 3 – 1984, ‘86, ‘89.

Tony Scullion (Derry) 3 – 1987, ‘92, ‘95. Also won an All Star in 1993 when Derry were All-Ireland champions.

Tommy Dowd (Meath) 3 -1991, ‘94, ‘95. Also won an All Star in 1996 when Meath were All-Ireland champions.

Anthony Tohill (Derry) 3 – 1992, ‘95, 2000. Also won an All Star in 1993 when Derry were All-Ireland champions.

Stephen Cluxton (Dublin) 3 – 2002, ‘06, ‘07. Also won All Stars in 2011, ‘13 and ‘19 when Dublin were All-Ireland champions.

Karl Lacey (Donegal) 3 – 2006, ‘09, ‘11. Also won an All Star in 2012 when Donegal were All-Ireland champions.

Aidan O’Shea (Mayo) 3 – 2013, ‘15, ‘17.

Conor McManus (Monaghan) 3 – 2013, ‘15, ‘18.

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