No place to Hyde
The key to success for Tyrone at Dr.Hyde Park next Saturday is to play with the same swagger they demonstrated so effectively in the Athletic Grounds last month, suggests a man with a respected pedigree as a player, manager and analyst at the top level of the sport, writes Kevin Hughes.
Brian Canavan, who witnessed at first hand how the Connacht team bounced back from their provincial fhorror show to stun Orchard county supporters with a shock win over an Armagh team which had looked to have done enough in Hyde Park last weekend, give a very firm thumbs-up to the Red Hands.
The former Armagh player, who jointly managed the Orchard county team along with Brian McAlinden and led them to an Ulster title, doesn’t believe it would be in Tyrone’s interest to adopt the same tactics as against Donegal last time out - and he’s convinced that it won’t happen because the semi-final performance was a one-off horses-for-courses necessity.
“Tyrone will win in Hyde Park, I don’t have much doubt about that. I don’t know whether Roscommon were very good or Armagh were pretty poor or it was somewhere in between, but I don’t believe it matters much. Tyrone are a much more accomplished team,” said the man from Poyntzpass.
“In the first half Armagh were five points clear and apparently coasting. Indeed, they probably should have been nine or ten points up at halftime. On reflection, perhaps a bit of complacency had crept into their play.
“But Roscommon came out with all guns blazing and stuck the ball in the net within twenty seconds of the throw-in and it was then obviously a completely new ball-game. And Armagh couldn’t get back into their rhythm and paid a big price.
“Roscommon have one very good forward, Sean Kilbride is his name. He looks an exceptionally good player and is a bit of a playmaker as well as a scoretaker. I believe he could be a threat next Saturday.
“I would say the other main man to worry about up front would be Donie Shine, who can do damage if he’s not closely watched.
“Playing at home is unqestionably an advantage for the Connacht team but the big difference between this game and the Armagh match, apart from the fact that Tyrone are stronger and better opposition, is that they are now exposed.
“The element of surprise is not a factor but, as well as that, the home support will now be expecting a win, or at least a huge performance, against Tyrone and that puts additional pressure on the players and management.
“But, if Tyrone go back to the style of football they played in the Athletic Grounds and play as well as they did that day, I can only see one result.
“The one little reservation I have is that they are not as sharp up front as I imagine they’d like to be, with Stephen O’Neill and Owen Mulligan in particular not up to their usual high standards,” added Canavan.
So, there you have it; it’s a vote of confidence from one of Radio Ulster’s most respected analysts.
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Weather for Dungannon
Monday 20 May 2013
Temperature: 7 C to 16 C
Wind Speed: 16 mph
Wind direction: North
Temperature: 8 C to 15 C
Wind Speed: 14 mph
Wind direction: North