Big match reaction
When some Tyrone players and joint manager Feargal Logan were ruled out of any involvement in Saturday’s Ulster senior football championship because of Covid-19 self-isolation, Brian Dooher, the other half of the management team, stepped up smartly to the mark.
And just as he had done on three occasions as a much-vaunted player in the Noughties, Dooher helped to plot another provincial title for the Red Hands.
The odds may not quite have been deemed to be in his favour but the intrepid Dooher passed his test with flying colours.
“We were taking no chances, we took advice from our medical team and as a result we made a few alterations,” revealed Logan.
Never one to mince his words, though, Dooher made it quite clear that while another provincial title is a welcome boost for the county, there are issues to be tackled before the All-Ireland semi-final meeting with Kerry.
“I think there is room for improvement because, to be honest, if we give that second-half performance we showed against Monaghan again I don’t think there’s any point in us going to Croke Park in a fortnight’s time,” declared Dooher, “We definitely have some homework to do ahead of the semi-final.”
Monaghan manager Seamus McEnaney cut a desolate figure in the immediate aftermath of the game yet he nonetheless heaped praise on his side.
“We fought tooth and nail. We took it right down to the wire,” said McEnaney, his voice breaking, “We have had a difficult couple of weeks in Monaghan with all that has happened off the field but I have to say that I could not be more proud of this Monaghan team.”
“We have been in a lot of tight games this year and we only lost one before this final. Unfortunately on this occasion we just didn’t bring the level of energy as we would have liked to the first-half but I think the team showed their true character and spirit in the second-half."