Donegal v Tyrone: Three key battles in the Ulster SFC final

Alan Foley looks at the battles that could swing the game.

Rory Gallagher v Mickey Harte

One of the most fascinating battles on Sunday will take place on the sidelines. Donegal showed against Monaghan they’re more than willing to slow the game to an almost standstill and not kick away possession. Both sides are masters of the counter-attack but nowadays Tyrone have more speed in that department. Expect both to try and draw out their opponents in an effort to try and create space when on the ball, and when without it. It’s all about the turnover and speed of attacks.

Michael Murphy v Justin McMahon

When Donegal ran out 1-13 to 1-10 winners over Tyrone in last year’s Ulster tie in Ballybofey, one of the subplots in the battle of attrition was Justin McMahon’s steadfastness in sticking like glue to Murphy, regardless of where the ball was. The Donegal captain kept his cool to see his team home and if the evidence of Donegal’s semi-final replay win over Monaghan is anything to go on, Rory Gallagher will let Murphy drag McMahon in and out of the danger area, something he did to Vinny Corey in Cavan.

Frank McGlynn v Peter Harte

Peter Harte
Peter Harte

Frank McGlynn, pictured below, is the Donegal player whose form has improved year on year since the All-Ireland win on 2012 and he has stepped into the role occupied by Karl Lacey as the most effective link between forward and attack. When Monaghan tried to block the channels and snuff out the threat of Ryan and Eoin McHugh, it was the likes of McGlynn and Anthony Thompson who came as auxiliary runners. Comfortable on the ball, McGlynn, too, has the ability to man-mark and will need his wits about him against possibly Tyrone’s best player, Peter Harte. Against Cavan, six shots from the rampant Harte yielded 2-4 and his style is the epitome of the current Tyrone team.


Lifestyle

Cork author Conal Creedon tells Richard Fitzpatrick about some of his influences, from characters in his family’s shop to Ian Dury and Jim JarmuschCulture That Made Me: Conal Creedon on showbands, punk rock and playing the saw

A new thriller on Netflix is already causing a stir, and JK Rowling has set the internet alight with chapters of her fairytale, writes Des O’DriscollOnline Entertainment Tips: Snowpiercer, JK Rowling's new tale, and two films on Repeal

She's been sorting out Cork people for ages likeAsk Audrey: Normal People is basically a Maeve Binchy novel with mobile phones

Every evening, volunteers set out on bikes from Penny Dinners, delivering food and supplies to Cork’s homeless community. Donal O’Keeffe accompanied the Knight Riders on their rounds.Knight Riders bike around Cork city to deliver food to the homeless for Cork Penny Dinners

More From The Irish Examiner