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08th Apr 2020

WATCH: BBC colleague recalls Kevin Kilbane explaining hurling to Ruud Gullit

James Fenton

Ruud Gullit is a man who reached the pinnacle of his sport but even he will never know the feeling of lifting the Liam MacCarthy Cup at Croke Park.

Mostly known in Ireland for captaining the Netherland team that ended our Euro 88 journey as well as sitting on a shed in advent calendars (according to Father Dougal), Gullit’s status as a soccer legend is fairly indisputable.

While he may have conquered the world’s most popular game, his knowledge of hurling is presumably not as strong but with the help of former Ireland international Kevin Kilbane, he should have enough to get by.

BBC Sport presenter Mark Chapman has been chatting to Off The Ball about his career in the media and he told host Joe Molloy about the time he witnessed Kilbane filling Gullit in on the ins and outs of the clash of the ash during a broadcasting break.

Chapman said: “I can remember doing one with Ruud Gullit and Kevin Kilbane and one game finishing and the hurling was on one of the other Sky channels so Kevin explaining hurling to Ruud Gullit is an incredibly surreal moment for me.”

He went on to describe how even being in the presence of the Dutch great would have been something he could never have envisaged as a fan of Gullit and soccer as a whole growing up.

While the status of this year’s hurling championship might be up in the air due to Covid-19, Ruud could well take up an invite to Thurles or Pairc Ui Chaoimh in the coming years.

You can listen to the full chat with Mark Chapman here or catch the hurling snippet in the clip below…

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