The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly: A look at Ulster’s footballing year

After a year of inter-county football action, Shaun Casey runs his eye over the Ulster teams… Antrim The Good – A run to the Tailteann Cup semi-finals and an outing in Croke Park signals a decent first season in the hotseat for former Meath boss Andy McEntee. It was his native county that ended the […]

Litmus test for the Oak Leafers

ALL-IRELAND SFC SEMI-FINAL Derry v Kerry Sunday, Croke Park, 4pm Live on RTÉ and BBC By Niall Gartland Advertisement ECHOES of 2012? Recall the celebrations when Kerry beat their Tyrone, by then a pale shadow of the team that had won three All-Irelands, out the gate in Killarney. Paul Galvin was leaping around, Kieran Donaghy held the rather more […]

STEVEN POACHER: The Conor Glass effect

TWO weeks ago, before the real knockout action started in the intercounty championship, I spoke about the importance of teams limiting turnovers and how costly turnovers would be when it came to clutch moments in big games. The quarter finals were littered with them particularly in the opening game of the weekend when Kerry’s defensive intensity […]


Full cycle of development makes Derry an easier sell

By Michael McMullan DERRY minor manager Damian McErlain insists the county senior footballers’ upward curve has morphed interest in football across the county into “a different animal”. Speaking ahead of his side’s final week of preparation for Sunday week’s All-Ireland minor final showdown with Monaghan, McErlain – a former senior manager – has noticed first-hand […]

Preview: Derry’s latest national barometer

All-Ireland SFC quarter-final Derry v Cork Sunday, Croke Park, 1.45pm Live on RTÉ By Michael McMullan “They may not appreciate it when I say it, but Derry needed this All-Ireland a lot more than Cork did.” The words of Derry captain Henry Downey followed the 1993 All-Ireland final, the last time the Oakleaf County crossed […]

STEVEN POACHER: A chink in the Kingdom armour

LAST weekend the start of the All-Ireland group stages commenced with holders Kerry opening their account against this year’s league champions and contenders to their crown Mayo. A lot of discussion has emerged around the new group format and the pointless nature of three group games and the incredible scenario that in some groups, even […]

Ulster Championship Team of the Year: Oaks stand tall again

Derry’s win over Armagh brought the curtain down on another Ulster Senior Football Championship. Michael McMullan cast his eyes over the key players in his Team of the Year selection. 1 – Odhrán Lynch (Derry) LITTLE to choose between him and Ethan Rafferty but saving three penalties in a shoot-out is something Lynch, Derry folk or […]

Derry drew on their Ulster final experience

By Michael McMullan THE experience of 2022 and dealing with the noise in Clones stood to Derry as Sunday’s Ulster final insists manager Ciaran Meenagh. Without the use of a Maor Foirne, running on to give instructions, Meenagh expressed how difficult it was to get messages on to the players as Sunday’s Ulster final morphed […]