Tyrone county football team

The Tyrone county football team represents Tyrone GAA, the county board of the Gaelic Athletic Association, in the Gaelic sport of football. The team competes in the three major annual inter-county competitions; the All-Ireland Senior Football Championship, the Ulster Senior Football Championship and the National Football League.

Tyrone GAA crest.jpg
Irish:Tír Eoghain
Nickname(s):The O'Neill men
The Red Hands
County board:Tyrone GAA
Manager:Feargal Logan and Brian Dooher
Captain:Pádraig Hampsey[1][2]
Home venue(s):Healy Park, Omagh
Recent competitive record
Current All-Ireland status:W in 2021
Last championship title:2021
Current NFL Division:1 (4th in 2021)
Last league title:2003
First colours
Second colours

Tyrone's home ground is Healy Park, Omagh. The team's managers are Feargal Logan and Brian Dooher.

The team last won the Ulster Senior Championship in 2021, the All-Ireland Senior Championship in 2021 and the National League in 2003.


Pre-Harte era: 1956–2002Edit

Tyrone won its first Ulster Senior Football Championship (SFC) in 1956, defending it successfully in 1957. The county did not win a third Ulster SFC title until 1973. The Tyrone minor team, however, won the All-Ireland Minor Football Championship (MFC) in 1947, 1948 and 1973. 1973 is remembered because Frank McGuigan, who captained the minor team, was also part of the under-21 and senior teams which won their respective Ulster Championships.

The Tyrone team of the mid-eighties included McGuigan, Eugene McKenna, Plunkett Donaghy and John Lynch, winning a fourth Ulster SFC title in 1984, and in 1986, reaching a first ever final of the All-Ireland Senior Football Championship (SFC), where Kerry defeated it by a scoreline of 2–15 to 1-10. Tyrone added a sixth Ulster SFC (after a replay of the final) in 1989.

However, All-Ireland SFC success eluded Tyrone and the county watched as its Ulster rivals won an unprecedented four consecutive national titles in the early 1990s (two titles for Down bookending one title for Donegal, as well as Derry's only title).[3]

Tyrone would reach the 1994 Ulster SFC final to lose to eventual All-Ireland winners Down; however, Tyrone's forward Peter Canavan was Ulster's top scorer, winning his first All Star Award. The following year Tyrone had its turn at being Ulster champions and, in keeping with the recent form of the winners of that competition, reached the 1995 All-Ireland Senior Football Championship Final (only the county's second ever). Dublin emerged as victors by a scoreline of 1–10 to 0–12, in a match that was notable both for Canavan scoring 11 of Tyrone's 12 points, and for Dublin's Charlie Redmond failing to leave the pitch for a full minute after being sent off for a foul. In 1996, Tyrone again met Down in the Ulster SFC final, this time emerging as the winner. However, the county fell at the 1996 All-Ireland SFC semi-final stage to a Meath team "who bullied them in a way that left the losers with a reputation for softness", according to one commentator.[3]

In 1998, the county won the All-Ireland MFC final for the first time in fifteen years, with a team that included future senior team players Cormac McAnallen, Stephen O'Neill and Ryan McMenamin. McAnallen also captained the county's under-21 team to successive All-Ireland Under-21 Football Championship titles in 2000 and 2001.

However, having won an Ulster SFC, Tyrone and its young team "folded in the face of a rugged Derry challenge" in the 2011 All-Ireland SFC quarter-final.[3] Further decline followed with a season in which Sligo "ran Tyrone ragged" during an All-Ireland SFC qualifier.[3]

Harte era: 2002–2020Edit

2003 brought the introduction of a new Tyrone manager, Mickey Harte. Harte's team eventually overcame Down in the Ulster SFC final, requiring a replay, when Harte switched McAnallen from midfield to full-back.[3] Tyrone won against Fermanagh in the All-Ireland SFC quarter-final, before overcoming Kerry in the semi-final by a scoreline of 0–13 to 0–6. Canavan limped off injured early in that game and television expert Pat Spillane deemed Tyrone's approach during the second half of the semi-final to be "puke football".[3] The 2003 All-Ireland SFC final was Tyrone's third and had the county pitted against rival and neighbouring county Armagh, the reigning All-Ireland SFC champions (Armagh had also beaten Tyrone to the title). It was the first All-Ireland SFC final between sides from the same province. Canavan was still injured but Harte decided to have him feature from the start; Canavan scored five points from frees before being substituted at half-time, later to re-emerge onto the pitch in the closing moments as Tyrone held a narrow lead.[3] Tyrone won by a scoreline of 0–12 to 0–09 and lifted the Sam Maguire Cup for the first time. 2003 also saw Tyrone win the National Football League for a second successive year.

Tragedy struck the following year with the sudden death of Cormac McAnallen, at the age of 24.

Tyrone, however, came back the following year to win the All-Ireland SFC for a second time. The county played a total of ten matches, including three replays, which was a record for any winning team.[3] Tyrone played five matches in the Ulster SFC, including replays against Cavan in the semi-final and against Armagh in the final, which they lost. That replay was later described by one commentator as "perhaps the most mean-spirited match played since Dublin–Galway's 1983 All-Ireland final meeting and seemed to confirm the widespread idea that the game was tending towards a zero point of cynicism and negativity".[3] Having to contest an All-Ireland SFC qualifier as a result of that loss, Tyrone overcame Monaghan to reach an All-Ireland SFC quarter-final against Dublin.[3] Tyrone had yet another drawn game, a match notable for Owen Mulligan's stunning solo goal.[3] Manager Harte combined Enda McGinley with Joe McMahon for the second half, a move which outwitted Ciarán Whelan, who had been getting the better of his opponents in the first half; Whelan was ultimately removed from the game by Dublin.[3] In the All-Ireland SFC semi-final, the county met Armagh for a third time; two points behind with only six minutes of play left, Seán Cavanagh scored a solo point, substitute Shane Sweeney levelled the game and Peter Canavan converted an injury-time free.[3] Tyrone won by a scoreline of 1–13 to 1–12. In the 2005 All-Ireland SFC final, the county defeated Kerry for the second time in three years to win the Sam Maguire Cup, sparking emotional scenes among the Tyrone team and fans, in remembrance of Cormac McAnallen.

Tyrone won its eleventh Ulster SFC title in 2007, but lost to Meath in the All-Ireland SFC quarter-final.

The county lost its opening game of the 2008 Ulster SFC, a quarter-final to Down.[3] Entering the All-Ireland SFC qualifiers again, the county's progress went largely unnoticed until it reached the All-Ireland SFC quarter-final, where Tyrone hammered Dublin by 12 points.[3] The team advanced to the All-Ireland SFC semi-final against Wexford but did not impress against the Strawberries, appearing in at that stage for the first time since 1945.[3] Tyrone did enough though, but entered 2008 All-Ireland SFC final against a Kerry team then bidding to win three consecutive titles.[3] Kerry did not. Despite Peter Canavan's retirement, Mulligan's disciplinary problems and O'Neill's on-off retirement through injury, Tyrone prevailed to win a third All-Ireland SFC title.[3] Tyrone defeated Kerry by a scoreline of 1–15 to 0–14. Justin McMahon dealt with Kerry's new weapon, Kieran Donaghy, while the half-back line of David Harte, Conor Gormley and Philip Jordan outperformed expectations from outside the county and Cavanagh scored five points from play.[3]

Tyrone reached All-Ireland SFC semi-finals in 2009, 2013, 2015, 2017 and 2019, only for Cork, Mayo, Kerry, Dublin and Kerry (again) to beat it respectively. A shock All-Ireland SFC quarter-final loss to Dublin occurred in 2010.[3]

Tyrone won its fifteenth Ulster SFC in 2017. But that year's All-Ireland SFC semi-final defeat was by a margin of 12 points.[3] It reached the 2018 All-Ireland Senior Football Championship Final but Dublin defeated it again.

Harte's final championship game ended in defeat to Donegal in the 2020 Ulster SFC quarter-final and, with no All-Ireland SFC qualifiers due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on Gaelic games, Tyrone's championship ended after one game.[4]

Dooher and Logan era: 2020–Edit

Harte departed as manager in November 2020. A short while later, Feargal Logan and Brian Dooher succeeded him.[5] Logan had been tipped to take sole charge but Dooher joined him.[6] Both were previously in charge of the county's under-21 team in 2015.[7] Peter Canavan had also been involved with the 2015 under-21 team but had earlier ruled himself out due to family involvement.[8][9]

Like Harte's appointment, the Dooher and Logan managerial ticket was immediately successful, with the team winning an unexpected 2021 All-Ireland SFC in its first year. Dooher became the fifth manager to win an All-Ireland SFC after earlier captaining his county to victory in the same competition (and the first since Páidí Ó Sé in 1997).[10] Conor McKenna became the fourth former AFL player to win the Sam Maguire Cup.[11]


Tyrone has its own supporters' club, called Club Tyrone, which was established in 1995. Unlike supporters' clubs in other counties, it is a sub-committee of the county board and focuses on fundraising. By 2016, it had raised several million pounds and received regular sums of £500 from close to 500 individual supporters each year.[12]

Current squadEdit

Team as per Tyrone vs Mayo in the All-Ireland SFC Final, 11 September 2021

No. Player Position Club
1 Niall Morgan Goalkeeper Edendork
2 Michael McKernan Right Corner Back Coalisland
3 Ronan McNamee Full Back Aghyaran
4 Pádraig Hampsey (c) Left Corner Back Coalisland
5 Frank Burns Right Half Back Pomeroy
6 Peter Harte Centre Back Errigal Ciarán
7 Kieran McGeary Left Half Back Pomeroy
8 Brian Kennedy Midfield Derrylaughan
9 Conn Kilpatrick Midfield Edendork
10 Conor Meyler Right Half Forward Omagh
11 Michael O'Neill Centre Forward Ardboe
12 Niall Sludden Left Half Forward Dromore
13 Darren McCurry Right Corner Forward Edendork
14 Mattie Donnelly Full Forward Errigal Ciarán
15 Conor McKenna Left Corner Forward Eglish
No. Player Position Club
16 Lorcan Quinn Substitute Donaghmore
17 Mark Bradley Substitute Killyclogher
18 Darragh Canavan Substitute Errigal Ciarán
19 Paul Donaghy Substitute Dungannon
20 Niall Kelly Substitute Errigal Ciarán
21 Tiernan McCann Substitute Killyclogher
22 Ben McDonnell Substitute Errigal Ciarán
23 Hugh Pat McGeary Substitute Pomeroy
24 Cathal McShane Substitute Owen Roe O'Neill's
25 Jonathan Monroe Substitute Carrickmore
26 Conor Shields Substitute Clogher

Current management teamEdit

Appointed on a three-year term in November 2020:[13]

Managerial historyEdit

Tyrone Senior Football Manager
Name Period
Art McRory –2002
Eugene McKenna
Mickey Harte 2002–2020
Feargal Logan 2020–
Brian Dooher


Notable playersEdit


Most appearancesEdit

  • The following are among those to have made the highest number of appearances for the senior team:
# Name Career Apps
1 Seán Cavanagh[20] 2002–2017 89+?

All StarsEdit

Peter Canavan strikes the ball with his foot during his county's 2005 All-Ireland Senior Football Championship Final victory over Kerry; he won six All Stars.

Tyrone have 49 All Stars.

Player 1980 1984 1986 1989 1994 1995 1996 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2008 2009 2010 2013
Kevin McCabe  Y
Eugene McKenna  Y  Y  Y
Frank McGuigan  Y
John Lynch  Y
Plunkett Donaghy  Y
Damien O'Hagan  Y
Peter Canavan  Y  Y  Y  Y  Y  Y
Fay Devlin  Y
Finbar McConnell  Y
Stephen O'Neill  Y  Y  Y
Cormac McAnallen  Y
Conor Gormley  Y  Y  Y
Philip Jordan  Y  Y  Y  Y
Sean Cavanagh  Y  Y  Y  Y  Y
Brian Dooher  Y  Y  Y
Brian McGuigan  Y
Ryan McMenamin  Y
Owen Mulligan  Y
Justin McMahon  Y
Davy Harte  Y
Enda McGinley  Y

Kit evolutionEdit

1995 All-Ireland SFC finalists
All-Ireland SFC champions
2016 Ulster SFC champions



  1. ^ "Team news: Hampsey is new Red Hands captain". Hogan Stand. 14 May 2021.
  2. ^ "Pádraig Hampsey is new Tyrone captain – but no sign of Cathal McShane comeback just yet". Irish Independent. 14 May 2021.
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u Sweeney, Eamonn (22 November 2020). "Special One turned the Tyrone tide". Sunday Independent.
  4. ^ Foley, Alan (1 November 2020). "Mickey Harte's shortest battle as Donegal win the war to knock out Tyrone". Irish Examiner. Retrieved 5 August 2021.
  5. ^ "Tyrone Appoint Feargal Logan & Brian Dooher as the New Tyrone Senior Football Managers". Tyrone GAA. 25 November 2020. Retrieved 25 November 2020.
  6. ^ "Tyrone: Feargal Logan and Brian Dooher named joint-managers on three-year term". BBC Sport. 25 November 2020.
  7. ^ "Tyrone will have open-door policy - Dooher". Hogan Stand. 27 November 2020.
  8. ^ "Logan and Dooher team up as new Tyrone managers". Hogan Stand. 25 November 2020.
  9. ^ "Canavan not interested in succeeding Harte". Hogan Stand. 15 November 2020.
  10. ^ "Something from the weekend: Lucky 13, Irish in the AFL and McKenna and Dooher join exclusive clubs". 13 September 2021.
  11. ^ Extra.ie
  12. ^ "Can Cork GAA afford not to have its own supporters' club?". The Southern Star. 1 August 2016.
  13. ^ "Tyrone: Feargal Logan and Brian Dooher named joint-managers on three-year term". BBC. 25 November 2020.
  14. ^ "Monaghan GAA: Donie Buckley and Jonny Davis join Seamus McEnaney's backroom team". BBC. 23 December 2020. Former Mayo and Kerry coach Donie Buckley and ex-Tyrone strength and conditioning coach Jonny Davis have been appointed to Seamus McEnaney's Monaghan football management team... Davis is effectively swapping roles with Peter Donnelly, who is now part of the new Tyrone management team.
  15. ^ "Injury forces Tyrone's Harry Loughran to retire at 26". RTÉ. 24 February 2021.
  16. ^ "Harry Loughran: Tyrone attacker forced to retire at 26 due to persistent back injury". BBC. 24 February 2021.
  17. ^ "Tyrone legend Donnelly passes away". RTÉ Sport. 15 March 2007. Archived from the original on 20 March 2007.
  18. ^ "Tyrone's legendary Frankie Donnelly passes away". Hogan Stand. 16 March 2007.
  19. ^ "The pain remains for Cavanagh". Hogan Stand. 19 April 2021.
  20. ^ "'Unplayable in full flight' - fans salute Cavanagh after latest Laochra Gael episode". Hogan Stand. 23 April 2021. Player of the year 08, 5 All Stars, 3 AI Senior medals, 6 Ulster Senior medals, an AI minor, & record Tyrone appearance holder, he's done it all.
  21. ^ Hoganstand.com – Profile Archived 2013-04-10 at the Wayback Machine
  22. ^ "First senior triumph for Tyrone", Cork Examiner, 07/05/1973

External linksEdit