GAA Football

What we learned about Tyrone and Key Battle

Andy Watters

What we learned about Tyrone

IT'S difficult to quantify this because the Red Hands cantered to an 11-point win. Tyrone certainly looked like contenders but we won't know how good they really are until they meet Donegal.

For long swathes of the game they were in control and when Derry did test them in the middle third they passed with flying colours. The Oak Leaf side rallied, but Tyrone refused to panic. Instead, they dug in and made the game difficult for their opponents before wrestling back the initiative and storming to the finish.

Their running game worked well, causing havoc in the Derry defence when they got numbers forward and 22 points is an excellent return. There were 12 wides as well and only two points from play from their starting six forwards gives some cause for concern as does the lack of goal-scoring opportunities created – just one, and it fell to Aidan McCrory.

However, Darren McCurry, Declan McClure, Lee Brennan and David Mulgrew all came off the bench to score, illustrating the formidable bench strength in Mickey Harte's panel. Much more to come from the Red Hands.

Key battle

Conall McCann (Tyrone) v Emmett McGuckin (Derry)

DERRY had some early success with kick-outs to the towering McGuckin on the left wing. But Tyrone quickly got to grips with that tactic and McCann dominated the duel as the game wore on.

The Killyclogher midfielder kicked points in either half and was involved in several other score. Meanwhile, McGuckin failed to register a score.

GAA Football

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