Log in

McStay – ‘Win whatever it takes!’

 

 

Rossies face ‘live or die’ Leitrim battle

 

Despite the fact that there will have been an 11-week gap between competitive games for Roscommon from the Cavan game in the league to Sunday’s Connacht semi-final, the pressure is on the players and team management to deliver a winning performance.

  Relegation, after a disappointing league campaign, is now in the past and the minimum that will be required from this season is a good win against Leitrim and a place in the Connacht final.

  So considering they’ve had such a long break, does manager Kevin McStay believe that the time has been used wisely in the build-up to Sunday’s game?

  “We think so, we are coming to the boil nicely, and we are really looking forward to this match. It seems like such a long time since we played a big game. The lads are itching to get out on the field and play championship. We have been gearing for this game all year. The lads have got in a bit of club activity and we think that there has been a nice balance. We trained extremely hard under David Joyce and we got a good few games in as well so we have a good mix in there. Of course we will see on Sunday how we are, but we have a great sense of anticipation about this challenge,” he said.

  Roscommon have played a number of challenge games in recent weeks and in the last two, against Sligo and Wexford, have put up big totals. Kevin says that despite the fact that they were only challenge games and not very intense, there were a lot of positives.

  “I was very happy that we got in to score a good few goals and the manner of how they came about was pleasing. I liked our support play and the fact that we are beginning to settle on a pattern of play and a starting team is positive. The players are playing well and the challenge games are just confirming what I have been seeing in training. But you have to realise that Sligo and Wexford had been beaten in the championship and you have to realise how hard it is to get things going again after a defeat. We know ourselves from last year but we can only play what’s in front of us. It’s very hard to actually get challenge games at this time of the year. What I was happy about was the attitude of the players and that we were clinical in front of goal and we won those games early. That’s very positive but we are not getting carried away or anything,” he added.

  McStay is under no illusions however and the Roscommon manager described Sunday’s encounter with Leitrim as “live or die”.

  “Oh yeah, this is huge for players and team management. It’s a big fence to jump but we are at home and we have to jump that fence and whatever it takes to win that match is what we have to do. I know that puts pressure on the lads but that pressure has been in our dressing room since the draw was made. This game has been on our radar from a long way out and we have had no distractions. It would be very, very difficult to have to go into a qualifier after a defeat to Leitrim so we are putting all our eggs into this basket and we have to arrive here on Sunday ready for this,” he said.

  Leitrim will be long odds outsiders for this game, but what does Kevin McStay make of this Leitrim outfit?

  “Well, I saw the tapes of the London games and (selector) Ger Dowd went over the see the match and it was a good championship game. It was tight, and our feeling in the run-up to that game was that Leitrim were always going to win it. We watched them in the National League and although they started slowly, they improved as it went on and we always thought they would beat London. I like their midfield which is strong. They would hold their own in that department with many teams. I like their full-forward line and their defence is tasty enough too. Then again we have a strong full-forward line. But we have to make sure that we do well at midfield and that’s a huge challenge for us. We are likely to have one rookie there with an experienced partner so that’s a challenge for us. But if we get enough ball in that area, there are enough scores in our team to win it.”

   It’s the first championship game on the newly laid pitch at Dr Hyde Park and with a crowd of 8,000 to 10,000 expected, it’s a huge day for Kevin and his players after such a long wait. The manager seemed anxious to get started.

  “We are bursting to get out there to be honest. We are the last team in the country out in the championship and the pitch here at Dr Hyde Park is magnificent and they tell me it’s the biggest pitch in the country now, which is interesting. It is a really fast surface and that should suit the type of game that we want to play,” he said.

  Finally a word for the Roscommon supporters: Kevin is appealing to them to come out in force on Sunday and encourage this young team.

  “I just hope that the Roscommon supporters come in numbers on Sunday. I know that they are curious to see what we are at, and they are wondering can we pull this off but it would be great to see them really get behind this team. Remember that most of the players are only 22, 23, and 24-years-old. They deserve all the support they can get and I know that they will support this team in big numbers if we give them something to bite on and it is a major ambition of ours to put on a huge effort on Sunday against Leitrim,” he concluded.

 

Sideline view...Captain Ciaráin looking forward to championship return

 

 

Roscommon captain Ciaráin Murtagh said the players have used the 11-week break between league and championship to good effect and are looking forward to getting back into competitive action this Sunday.

   “It was nice to get the long break between league and championship. We got in a lot of extra work and now we are in championship mode and looking forward to it now. We have been playing well in challenge games but you can’t go by those results really. Leitrim will be really ready and up for this challenge but we are trying to play games and get lads used to handling the ball and get our game plan in operation because championship is so much more intense. I wouldn’t pass too much heed on the challenge games. It’s all about playing football and getting ready for the championship,” he said.

  Murtagh believes that lessons have been learned following a disappointing National League campaign.

  He said: “Even though we didn’t have a great league, we learned a lot playing against the top teams. Of course it would have been nicer to be winning those games but I think that there are a lot of positives that we can take out of the league campaign and we can use that to our advantage and move on and rectify our mistakes.”

  Sunday is a different story however and the St. Faithleach’s clubman is excited at the prospect of playing championship football in Roscommon town.

  “We can’t wait to get out on the magnificent new pitch here at Dr Hyde Park. I am looking forward to the Roscommon crowd coming out and supporting us. They are very loyal and are there for the good days and bad days and it will be great to be at home here on Sunday,” he said.

  Ciaráin will be teaming up with some very familiar faces once again as brothers Brian and Diarmuid are also on the Roscommon panel and in decent form.

  “It’s nice for the three of us (brothers) to be on the panel and thankfully we are injury free at the moment and enjoying our football and it is a great honour to be the captain of the team again this year and hopefully we can give a good account of ourselves on Sunday,” he concluded.

 

Rossies limber up for championship opener

 

Connacht SFC Semi-Final Roscommon v Leitrim on Sunday in Dr Hyde Park at 3.30 pm

Roscommon will become the final county to line out in the All-Ireland SFC when they will be the long odds-on favourites to beat Leitrim in the Connacht semi-final at Dr Hyde Park on Sunday. Looking at the formbook and both teams on paper, Roscommon should win with a bit to spare but this is championship football and Leitrim will enter the contest with very little expectation and that’s always a danger.

  All you have to do is to look at the way that Carlow denied Dublin any space or time in their game and the way Clare gave Kerry plenty to think about last Sunday too. Waterford should probably have beaten Cork as well, so there are plenty of warnings in there for Kevin McStay’s team as they approach this game. Any signs of complacency will be punished by Leitrim who would dearly love to come to Hyde Park and cause a major shock.

  The Roscommon team is along expected lines with John McManus and Sean Mullooly manning the vital positions at three and six. Tadgh O’Rourke and Enda Smith will form the vital midfield pairing and are an untried combination at championship level. Both are excellent footballers but they will have to produce on Sunday against a very impressive Leitrim pairing of Shane and Damien Moran. Roscommon will be hoping that their attack can prosper against the Leitrim defence and the Murtaghs, Donie Smith and Fintan Cregg should be able to get the scores that will be required.  

  Leitrim were lucky to have emerged from the game with London with a win but that clash will have brought them on a ton and especially that they came from two points down with only ten minutes to play to win it. With the wily John O’Mahony assisting Benny Guckian on the Leitrim management team, this is a dangerous assignment for Roscommon if they do not bring their ‘A game’ to the table.

   The long gap between a disappointing league campaign and this championship game has meant that the Roscommon players and management have had a chance to leave that campaign behind and preparations have gone well according to Kevin McStay and his selectors. The team have put up good scores in recent challenge games but we know that form in challenge games is a very unreliable yardstick when it comes to the intensity of championship football.

  Kevin McStay said it himself at last week’s press night that this championship game is a ‘live or die’ situation for the management team and for the players too and he is right. Roscommon have spent the last two years in Division One and Leitrim have failed to get out of Division Four in that time. The formbook points only one way but it’s not as simple as that. Roscommon have got to go out and deliver a performance.

  Leitrim have a very inexperienced team and against London they had five debutants. Donal Wrynn is an inspirational captain at centre half-back and an excellent player too. Leitrim also have strength off the bench and Ronan Kennedy (who scored two goals against London), Noel Plunkett and Wayne McKeon all made valuable contributions when introduced.

  There may be weak areas in this Roscommon team but they are unlikely to be exposed on Sunday and they should be well able to deal with the challenge offered by Leitrim. It is time for new leaders to stand up and be counted on this Roscommon team. I hear some supporters saying that this will be a cakewalk for Roscommon but that is something that will not happen. This is championship football and Leitrim will come ready for a fight.

  As far as Roscommon are concerned, anything other than a win on Sunday is unthinkable. I am expecting Leitrim to come and throw the kitchen sink at Roscommon in the first half and that when it comes to half-time there may not be much in the game. But with Niall Kilroy playing in a deep role, I am hoping that eventually the Roscommon attack will get enough room to get the scores that will win the game.

  It is an intriguing local derby and there should be a good crowd and a good atmosphere and one thing is for certain: the pitch will be perfect. I am not expecting a big Roscommon win but maybe a four or five point margin in the end.

Match odds: Roscommon 1/12,
 Leitrim 15/2, Draw 16/1.

Prediction: Roscommon

 

 

Mid-Western girl power set to hit Limerick

 

The Mid-Western U-14s girls’ soccer team braved the blustery conditions at Shiven Rovers Football Club last Saturday evening as their preparations intensified ahead of their opening Gaynor Cup match against Dublin Metropolitan in Limerick next week.

  Under the watchful eye of manager Eamon Boyle and his backroom team of Evan Davis, Gabriel Martin and Mary O’Donnell, the squad which includes players from eight clubs across Roscommon, Galway and surrounding counties was put through its paces.

  The Gaynor Cup is a prestigious annual event and features teams from across Ireland. This year Mid-Western will come up against Dublin Metro and Longford as they look to secure safe passage from their group of three. The top team in each group will continue on in the cup while second and third place will earn shield and plate berths respectively.

  Manager Eamon Boyle was in confident mood.

  “They’re a great bunch of girls to be honest. We went with a good team last year but we had a very young team too. Ten of the girls from last year will be part of this year’s squad so with the experience of last year’s Gaynor Cup and the extra year of maturity I think we have a right good panel this year,” he said.

  Women’s soccer is one of the fastest growing sports in the world and that trend appears to be echoed in this part of Ireland. The Mid-Western League came into being in 2015 in the hope of expanding the game beyond Roscommon and Galway. It has proven to be a shrewd move and Eamon believes the standard is improving all the time.

  “The standard is very good. Some of the clubs (Mid-Western League) have won Connacht titles. I’d prefer if more clubs pushed forward girls teams, as it stands there are eight teams in the league,” he said.

  Eamon paid tribute to the hard work of his fellow coaches and the support of Shiven Rovers and the other clubs in the league.

  Gaynor Cup appearances cost money however, and Eamon said next week’s trip wouldn’t have been possible without the hard work of those involved with the team and indeed the generous support of the community.

  “It took a bit of organising, we did a great fundraiser with signed jerseys and all the girls came back with lines sold. There were table quizzes and bag packs too and any time you asked you’d have girls and parents there to help you out,” he said.

  Sponsors like Geraghty Travel have also been a huge help with both football kits and travel arrangements for events such as next week’s competition.

  Having finished 12th out of 26th last year, Eamon believes this year’s panel are capable of competing with anyone in Limerick. When I put it to him that the opening fixture against Dublin Metropolitan would be a tough test, the Mid Western manager agreed.

  “A tough start! It’s a tough start for the Dubs, yeah!”

 

Reversing the trend of backwards soccer

 

I spent last weekend completely engrossed in sport, much to the chagrin of certain loved ones.

  It began on Saturday morning/afternoon when I attended a soccer coaching workshop in Lecarrow. Sligo man and FAI coach Niall Harrison was our tutor and it was thoroughly enjoyable and informative.

  This was followed by a visit to Shiven Rovers Football Club where the Mid Western Girls League were preparing to embark on another Gaynor Cup adventure in Limerick.  

  For those of you who don’t know, the Gaynor Cup is the girls’ equivalent to the Kennedy Cup in underage soccer. It’s a prestigious tournament featuring soccer leagues from across Ireland.

  Again it was interesting to watch fellow coaches in action particularly as the session was so well organised.

  On Sunday I caught up on the football and hurling championships before watching Ireland play Austria in the World Cup qualifier.

  Martin O’Neill and his team have come in for some heavy criticism due to their first half performance, and rightly so.

  Not playing Wes Hoolahan is the equivalent of the Welsh not playing Gareth Bale. He may be our most talented player but his involvement at international level has been restricted by mediocrity and by managers too intent on playing it safe.

  How many times have we seen ‘good’ international teams come to Dublin, be put under pressure and completely wilt? Many teams at that level struggle when put on the back foot and immersed in a cauldron of noise and this was evident again last Sunday.

  Anyway, this story has a point and it’s this: Both the FAI workshop and Gaynor Cup training on Saturday featured coaches who encouraged football. Niall Harrison described a backwards pass as “the last pass” a player in possession should play, instead he encouraged players to get their heads up and look forward when in possession.

  So why then do our international players play so negatively? I put it down to confidence and self-belief. Players like Wes Hoolahan, James McClean and Robbie Brady have it, whereas others don’t. It comes from proper coaching at grassroots level and instilling confidence in young players. Players are like human sponges from ages 6 to 13 and they know when a coach is uneasy about taking risks.

  Therefore it was good to spend Saturday with Niall Harrison and Eamon Boyle and his coaches as they encouraged their players to take chances and play football. Hopefully the next generation of Wes Hoolahans and Stephanie Roches is not too far away.  

 

Seamus Duke on Sport - 16th of June

 

The championships come alive!

The hurling championship continued to deliver outstanding entertainment last weekend with the Wexford v Kilkenny game. Wexford were fantastic and the atmosphere at the game and the reaction of the Wexford fans after the game is what the GAA championship is all about. What a display from Lee Chin for Wexford. They might not win the All-Ireland but Wexford will bring great colour and excitement to the rest of the championship. They will soon have to commission a statue to Davy Fitzgerald!

  It looks like this Kilkenny team, probably the greatest we have ever seen in the sport, is on the wane and it had to happen sometime.

  What I loved about last weekend was that the football championship came alive with two very good games in poor conditions. The Cavan v Monaghan game was settled by probably the best forward in the game, Conor McManus, who scored a peach of a goal in Breffni Park. But Cavan were unlucky not to have got at least a draw.   

  The game in Salthill may not have been the greatest ever seen in terms of quality but it was thrilling to the very last minute. The sending off of Keith Higgins was a key factor in the final result but Mayo couldn’t get the scores they needed and Galway were impressive.

  So what does that mean for Roscommon? I know that Kevin McStay’s men have to win against Leitrim on Sunday but I would prefer Roscommon’s chances against Galway rather than having to go to MacHale Park where Roscommon have a brutal record and have not won in the championship since 1986. Let’s see how next Sunday goes first!

  It will be exciting for fans and the TV audience nationally to see the new pitch at Dr. Hyde Park on Sunday and a crowd of 8,000 to 10,000 is expected. Anything other than a fairly comfortable Roscommon win would be a disaster.

National Sports Centre an impressive facility

I went to see Roscommon play Wexford in a senior football challenge game last week at the National Sports Centre in Abbotstown and I took time to look around, and what a facility it is.

  The game was played on an immaculate full floodlit pitch which had a stand with about 600 seats under cover. There were also four other fully lit GAA pitches, two of which were all-weather. There was also a hurling wall and at least six dressing rooms and showers, meeting rooms, gyms etc. and that was just the GAA facilities. There are at least 12 fully lit soccer pitches (the Irish team had been training there earlier in the day) there are hockey and rugby pitches as well. Then there is the indoor athletics and gymnastic facilities and that’s quite apart from the National Aquatic Centre which was there from the start.

  It is a magnificent facility but of course, like everything else it’s in Dublin, and the facts are that we are in the Third World down the country when it comes to sporting facilities.

‘Pay-as-you-watch’ on the horizon?

Sports followers who like to watch on TV will be interested in the following article from Monday on balls.ie:

  ‘The Financial Times are reporting that Sky Sports have seen a sharp decline in viewing figures for the past Premier League season. Average viewing for live games for the full season across Sky’s channels fell by 14%, which represents the sharpest decline they have suffered since these figures were first recorded in 2010. This decline in viewers comes at a worrying time for the broadcaster: they paid a total of £4.2 billion for the TV rights under the most recent agreement, which works out at an average of £10 million per game.

  There is also the wider context to fret about: ESPN’s business model has taken a huge loss owing to an enormous loss of subscribers, as viewers move to the on-demand model, in which you pay for what you want to watch.’

  It means that SKY and BT Sports could soon be in trouble if this trend continues and there will be moves to go to a ‘pay-as-you-watch’ situation where people will only pay for events and matches that they want to watch in the future. 

  It is very hard to justify spending up to €100 per month watching sporting TV as it stands. Very interesting times ahead for sure.

Irish soccer team hard to watch

Maybe it’s just me but I find it very hard to watch the Irish soccer team in action. The game came after the two football games, which were both very exciting and that probably was part of the reason. It’s just that Ireland do not have the standard of top class player that we have had in the past. But we have a great manager and the players show great commitment and a love for the jersey and playing for their country which counts for a lot.

  Last Sunday against Austria they were very poor in the first half but rescued the situation in the second period and were probably unlucky not to have won. It looks good for qualification for the World Cup in Russia now.

US Open will be a big hit

The US Open takes place in a new venue this week as it is staged for the first time at Erin Hill in Minnesota. The experts say that this is a very tough test and it is a very long course.

  In fact, the four par 5s are all over 600 yards with the 18th a massive 663 yards. It seems to me like a course for long hitters and that will bring in the likes of Dustin Johnston, Rory McIlroy, Brooks Koepka, Bubba Watson and Gary Woodland. A score close to even par is usually good enough to win and if McIlroy has cured his putting ills he could be a great bet to lift the title on Sunday night.

Championship Watch

Munster SHC Semi-Final: Cork v Waterford on Sunday in Thurles at 4 pm

Local GAA fans will be concentrating on Dr. Hyde Park on Sunday but nationally this is another mouth-watering clash and such has been the standard of the hurling championship so far we will all hope for another epic here. If Cork play as well in this game as they did against Tipperary then Waterford will be in trouble. But Waterford are an excellent side, have a good manager and they have their eyes on the big prizes this year and justifiably so too.

Match odds: Waterford 8/13, Cork 13/8, Draw 8/1.

Prediction: Waterford

Leinster SHC Semi-Final: Galway v Offaly on Sunday in Portlaoise at 2 pm

Anything other than an easy Galway win would be the shock of the decade.

Match odds: Galway 1/100, Offaly 12/1, Draw 33/1.

Prediction: Galway

Leinster SFC Semi-Final: Kildare v Meath on Saturday in Tullamore at 7 pm

This has the makings of a very tight and entertaining game. Both sides are improving and both put up big scores in their last outing. I have a feeling that there might be more firepower in Meath and Graham Reilly is the key man.

Match odds: Meath 1/1, Kildare 1/1, Draw 15/2.

Prediction: Meath

Ulster SFC Semi-Final: Donegal v Tyrone on Sunday in Clones at 2 pm

A real heavyweight clash in Clones and it will not be a place for the faint hearted. I am not expecting an open game and defences will rule. I am not convinced by Tyrone and if Donegal can continue their upward curve they can win it.

Match odds: Tyrone 8/11, Donegal 11/8, Draw 13/2.

Prediction: Donegal

Connacht SFC Semi-Final: Roscommon v Leitrim at Dr. Hyde Park on Sunday at 3.30 pm

The game is previewed in detail elsewhere this week.

Match odds: Roscommon 1/12, Leitrim 8/1, Draw 16/1.

Prediction: Roscommon

Qualifiers: This weekend there are four games in the qualifiers in Section A on Saturday and I am predicting wins for: Derry (v Waterford), Louth (v Longford), Laois (v Wicklow) and Sligo (v Antrim).

 

Basketball: Castlerea’s national award

 

Castlerea Community School were awarded Basketball School of the Year at a special awards ceremony at the National Basketball Arena in Tallaght on Saturday last. This was in recognition of their tremendous achievement in winning three All-Ireland titles.

  In addition, the school won three regional titles for the cadet girls, first year boys and second year boys and reached the All-Ireland play-offs with five teams this year. The school will now play in the much tougher B Division next season but with the talent available to them they should relish the challenge!

 

Ladies in last chance saloon!

 

TG4 Ladies Football Connacht IFC Roscommon v Sligo on Saturday in Tubbercurry at 7.30 pm

 

It’s the last chance saloon for Roscommon Ladies footballers this Saturday night when they must beat Sligo by a five-point margin if they want to contest this year’s Connacht final. The reason that a five-point margin is required is down to the scoring difference that will come into play if Roscommon can win.

  Roscommon players and management were devastated at their loss to Leitrim in the first round a few weeks ago when they led by one point going into injury-time and they ended up losing by six. Roscommon captain Natalie McHugh said that the Roscommon players were very disappointed following the Leitrim defeat but they are determined to put things right and reach the Connacht final.

  “We were very, very disappointed with the loss to Leitrim. It was very demoralising at the time. We should have put Leitrim away in the first half when we were on top and we paid dearly for that. But we have regrouped since and we have trained hard and we are determined to get to the Connacht final.

  “This is knock-out now with no second chances and to have to win by five will be a tough ask, but we are up for the challenge. The last time that we played Sligo was last year in Ballinlough and we are determined to beat them again. Sligo are a very physically strong team and there is never much between us when we meet. But we will be well prepared and we have no injuries and are ready for the challenge,” she concluded.

  To have to beat Sligo is a task in itself but to have to do so by five points is a tall order especially away from home. It is a task that’s not beyond Michael Finneran’s charges but they will have to produce the performance of the year to do so.

 

Players and management ‘chomping at the bit’

 

 

Roscommon selector Ger Dowd is ‘chomping at the bit’ and eager to see Roscommon in championship action on Sunday. He says that he has been so impressed by the positive attitude and the hard work from the Roscommon players in the past three months.

  “We have been gearing up for the championship all year really and we all remember the disappointment of last year and what happened against Galway and Clare and I know the players are eager to make amends so we are looking forward to the challenge against Leitrim on Sunday,” he said.

  However, Dowd insisted that Roscommon would not take Leitrim lightly: “I was over in London at the game between Leitrim and London and was impressed with them. They are well organised and any team with John O’Mahony associated with them will be well prepared and fit and they have a lot going for them. But we are looking forward to meeting them here in Dr Hyde Park on this magnificent pitch.

  “The fact that we are such hot favourites doesn’t really matter that much because we are under pressure to win the game anyway. But that is the kind of pressure that our players will have to cope with because we played in Division One and they played in Division Four so that is to be expected that we should be favourites. Our lads are focused. It is one hurdle at a time and this is one we have to jump on Sunday and that’s it,” he said.

  Roscommon will fancy their chances this Sunday and Dowd believes the players are ready.

  “This is a fantastic opportunity to get to a Connacht final and that is a huge honour for any player. There are many players who played inter-county football who never got a chance to play in a Connacht final. It is a major sporting event and the players have a chance to be part of that.

  “I have been delighted to have been involved with this bunch of players. As you know there is a huge amount of work involved in playing with a county senior team now. You have to travel the length and breadth of the country and it is very difficult for counties like we are in the west to prepare and get ready when you look at the likes of Dublin etc. But we have a great group of over 30 players with us and I can honestly say that they are chomping at the bit to wear the Roscommon jersey in the championship; it means as much to them as it did to any of us who were lucky enough to have played in the past. It is great to see that in this day and age and I can tell you that every single one of the players who start on Sunday and the lads that come on as well, will be giving 100% for the ‘Primrose and Blue’,” he concluded.

 

 

Brighter days ahead for Roscommon football?

 

Following a long and fairly bleak winter and spring, it appears that Roscommon’s appearance in this year’s championship will coincide with the belated arrival of summer. With brighter weather promised, could performances and results be about to pick up?

  While nobody would bet the house on summer temperatures, one thing is guaranteed: fitness levels will be at an annual high within the Roscommon camp. Manager Kevin McStay seemed quietly confident at last week’s press night particularly when it came to physical preparation. McStay has consistently referenced “gearing towards championship” so far this year and fitness coach David Joyce will have been tasked with taking the Rossies to the next level over the last few weeks.

  According to team captain Ciaráin Murtagh, the long break was welcome and it has given Roscommon a chance to regroup ahead of this weekend’s must-win fixture.

  It’s important to remember that this is a relatively young team and while this year’s league campaign was a painful one in many ways, it was also full of important lessons. Division One is the acid test for all top teams and while relegation was a set-back, the two seasons spent trying to shadow the likes of Kerry, Dublin and Donegal will only aid this young panel going forward.

  Looking ahead to this Sunday, Roscommon have a golden opportunity to make it two Connacht final appearances (three if you count replays) in two years and that is also good for development. Selector Ger Dowd described the provincial final as a “major sporting event” and it’s on these occasions that big game winning habits are forged.

  Leitrim certainly won’t come to the Hyde to roll over but with the shackles of Division One now broken, will we see some sunshine football after an eleven week hibernation? Roscommon, provided they shake off the cobwebs early, certainly have the players capable of taking the game to Leitrim and banishing the memories from a cruel league campaign.

 

Subscribe to this RSS feed

Roscommon