John O'Shea voted the winner in poll to crown Waterford's 'All Time Great'

Justin Kelly

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Justin Kelly

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John O'Shea voted the winner in poll to crown Waterford's 'All Time Great'

John O'Shea voted the winner in poll to crown Waterford's 'All Time Great'

After almost a month of voting, 16 contenders and three rounds of voting, the Waterford public has crowned its All Time Great. 

Waterford Live formed a 16-person list of contenders for the crown of Waterford's greatest ever person, spanning the realms of sport, politics and the arts, back in January.

In the intervening weeks, we have tasked you the Waterford public with voting in a series of matches from a last 16 stage right through to this week's final.

Former Irish international and Manchester United Champions League and multiple Premier League winner John O'Shea has emerged as the winner with 58% of the final vote. He staved off hurling juggernaut Michael 'Brick' Walsh in the decider.

John O'Shea surpassed a number of iconic Waterford people in his run to victory, including Waterford Crystal founders George and William Penrose at the last 16 stage and cycling legend Sean Kelly in the quarter-final. He then toppled longtime favourite John Mullane in the semi-final.

John O'Shea played for Ferrybank and Waterford Bohemians before signing for Manchester United in 1998 where he spent 13 years of his illustrious career

Playing under Sir Alex Ferguson, O'Shea secured five Premier League medals, along with two League Cup medals and Champions League, FA Cup and FIFA Club World Cup honours.

O'Shea moved to Sunderland in 2011, before signing a one-year deal with Championship club Reading last June.

O'Shea played his last of 118 matches for the Republic of Ireland last June, a 2-1 friendly win over the United States. He spent many a great day in the green jersey including when he scored a last-minute equaliser against the then world champions Germany during Ireland's Euro 2016 qualifying campaign.

Prior to his last cap for his country, O'Shea was congratulated by President Michael D Higgins, who called him “one of the most inspirational, committed and admired members of our national teams."

O'Shea said it was a "real privilege" to represent the Republic of Ireland for 22 years.

"There have been many highlights, such as leading Ireland out as captain, featuring at two UEFA European Championships, and getting to share a pitch alongside so many committed and talented players over the years," he said.

He is now officially's Waterford's All Time Great!