Former Leeds manager  Marcelo Bielsa. In the stands at Leeds they adored him. How could they not? Ninth in the Premier League in 2021, and back  in the big time. Photograph:  Michael Regan/Getty Images

Keith Duggan: as the curtain falls on Sunday the keenest emotions will be experienced by the fans in Burnley and Leeds

Munster GAA Senior Hurling Championship Round 3, Cusack Park, Ennis: Tempers flare between Clare’s John Conlon and Limerick’s Robbie Hanley. Photograph: Tom Maher/©INPHO

Limerick fielded slightly understrength side and were forced to play without Hegarty

 Tempers flare between Clare’s John Conlon and Robbie Hanley of Limerick. Photograph: Tom Maher/Inpho

Result means Clare and Limerick will meet again in Munster final early next month

Monaghan’s Jack McCarron celebrates with his father Ray and mother Patricia after sending Dublin to Division Two with his late free. Photograph: James Crombie

At long last, two of the best attacking talents in a generation get to work their magic

Former Australian golfer Greg Norman, chief executive of LIV Golf,  during a press conference on Wednesday  for a LIV Golf event at the Centurion golf club in  London. Photograph:   Glyn Kirk/AFP

Australian attempted to defend his role as front man for a Saudi-financed golf league

Clare’s John Conlon sees his hurl break as he is tackled by Cian Lynch of Limerick during   a Division 1 Group A game at  Cusack Park, Ennis, Co Clare, in March 2022. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

When the player changed role from forward to defender he took it all in his stride

Galway’s Owen Gallagher scores a goal against Leitrim. Photograph: Lorraine O’Sullivan/Inpho

Leitrim’s well-organised resistance dissolved in the face of relentless maroon pressure

Former Cavan footballer Cian Mackey. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Former Blues forward gone from the panel two years but keenly watching Donegal clash

Christy Ring surrounded by fans after the Cork v Tipperary Munster Hurling Final in  Limerick on July 13th, 1952. Photograph from Echoes of the Past – Where We Sported and Played

The huge commitment is still there, but players’ belief in the game is being eroded

 Jack Grealish of Manchester City reacts after missing a chance during the  Champions League semi-final second leg against Real Madrid at the  Bernabeu on  in Madrid, Spain. Photograph:  Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images)

Guardiola struggles to blend record signing’s free-spirited style into City’s game plan

 Brian Cody and  Henry Shefflin shake hands after the game. Photograph: Inpho

Off-pitch narratives show the futility of sport but also its beauty in enthralling encounter

Galway’s Conor Cooney signs autographs after the game. Photograph: Laszlo Geczo/Inpho

Neither Cody or Shefflin inclined to yield an inch as late Kilkenny goal almost got a draw

Kilkenny manager Brian Cody celebrates with Henry Shefflin after the All-Ireland  final replay win against Galway in September 2012. Photograph:  Cathal Noonan/Inpho

Shefflin will pit his hurling wits against Cody, the man who had been his mentor

 Con O’Callaghan’s return will be a huge boost for Dublin’s championship hopes. Photograph: Tommy Dickson/Inpho

Keith Duggan looks ahead to this weekend’s championship action in all four provinces

 Ireland’s Alex Higgins lines up a shot during the 1994 Embassy World Snooker Championships at the Crucible t in Sheffield, England. Photograph:  Mike Cooper/Allsport

Keith Duggan: the game remains blissfully indifferent to modern demands and constraints of time. A frame will take as long as it t(...)

Galway manager Pádraic Joyce after his team’s win over Mayo in Castlebar. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Pádraic Joyce dedicates Galway’s victory to Kate Moran as Armagh are out-foxed

Galway’s Shane Walsh celebrates scoring a free against Mayo. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Tribesmen show substance behind their style in gripping game at MacHale Park

Tempers flare in the closing stages in league match between Galway and Mayo in 2018. Photograph: Donall Farmer/Inpho

The counties become like siblings who cannot sit in a room without squabbling

 Kyle Hayes celebrates after scoring a wonderful goal following a stunning long solo run in last year’s championship victory over Tipperary at Páirc Uí Chaoimh. Photograph: Lorraine O’Sullivan/Inpho

Half-back a key figure as Kiely’s side seek to rediscover their best in championship opener

David Clifford: Kerry’s brilliant talisman  turned what would have been a horribly lopsided league final into a performance art.  Photograph: Evan Treacy/Inpho

No championship contender can afford to give Kingdom star any latitude

Head coach Mike Krzyzewski of the Duke Blue Devils. Photograph: Jim McIsaac/Getty

Mike Krzyzewski’s hopes to win NCAA finals, marking end to a remarkable 41-year career

Kerry manager Jack O’Connor during league match against Monaghan. Photograph: Ben Brady/Inpho

Food for thought for Jack O’Connor’s men as they prepare for an early visit to Croke Park

Last year, St Brogan’s won the overall junior section with Caoimhe Walsh’s project, Can Teens Make Better Food Choices?

PE Expo showcasing projects from schools around country returns to DCU after pandemic

Mayo’s Jordan Flynn puts the ball in the back of Kildare’s net. Photograph: Conor McKeown/Inpho

Winners face prospect of final without O’Connor brothers or Tommy Conroy in attack

If Louth beat Wicklow this weekend they will be promoted to Division Two. Photograph: Tommy Grealy/Inpho

Mickey Harte’s side are odds-on favourites to make the jump to Division Two this weekend

Stephen Kenny has worn the pressure well and is sticking to his guns of getting Ireland to play the way he wants. Photo: Evan Treacy/Inpho

Domestic league is on the up and national team is selling out the Aviva for friendlies

Kilkenny’s Padraig Walsh has been a revelation since switching to corner half-forward. Photo: Ben Whitley/Inpho

Division One final places up for grabs as Cork meet Kilkenny and Wexford face Waterford

 Victims’ campaigner Raymond McCord at the  pitches in  Belfast where he played youth club football for Star of the Sea along with Bobby Sands. Photo: Liam McBurney

Spirit of Star of the Sea to be seen in inaugural cross-community match

It has been 28 years since Donegal beat Dublin in a league game at Croke PArk. Photograph: Tom O’Hanlon/Inpho

Declan Bonner was a player last time Donegal beat Dublin in Croke Park league game

When Ferguson was at his height, gimlet-eyed and up for the argument always,  he bullied and cajoled  every last ounce out of his players. It was difficult to fully appreciate the enormity of what he had created. Photograph:  Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

Ferguson’s theatre of dreams has become a graveyard for managerial ambitions

Donegal’s Peadar Mogan is challenged by Darren Hughes of Monaghan during the Allianz Football League Division One  match at  MacCumhaill Park in  Ballybofey. Photograph: Evan Logan/Inpho

Home side lose first league game in 12 years at MacCumhaill Park

Tempers flare between the sides during the 2014 semi-final replay. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

The acquiescence has vanished with both counties on a mission to get over the line

  Eddie Jones’s contribution to rugby has never been more apparent.   Photograph: Stu Forster/Getty Images

Like Muhammad Ali, England coach knows how to engage the public and sell the game

There are active calls to boycott the 2024 World Cup in Qatar after the litany of mistreatments suffered by migrant workers on its tournament infrastructure. Photograph: Getty Images

Echoes of 1978 tournament could be heard clearly during 2018 World Cup in Russia

Joghn Terry, Roman Abramovich, Frank Lampard and Eidur Gudjohnnson celebrate with the Premier League trophy. Photograph:  John Ingledew/Chelsea FC via Getty Images

Unanswered questions created a mysteriousness that defined the Chelsea owner

Galway’s Adrian Tuohey is challenged by  James Lawlor of Wexford during the Allianz Hurling League Division 1A game at  Pearse Stadium in Salthill. Photograph:  Tommy Grealy/Inpho

Henry Shefflin admits his side ‘never got going’ as Wexford make it three from three

Darragh Egan: ‘We will be playing it as best we can, through the lines, direct. But a mix and match, a hybrid of both games, is what we need going forward.’ Referee: Ben Whitley/Inpho

Tipperary native brings a calm assurance and lots of coaching experience to his role as manager

Russian president Vladimir Putin during the opening ceremony prior to the 2018 World Cup match between Russia  and Saudi Arabia at Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow on June 14th. Photograph: Getty Images

Folly of granting prestige events to Russia will form vital component in future assessments

The Star of the Sea under-16s youth team with the league trophy in 1969. Raymond McCord is circled in the back row, Bobby Sands circled in the front row. Photo: Courtesy of Raymond McCord

The Star of the Sea were a tight group of young lads before the Troubles tore them apart

Kamila Valieva and her coaches Eteri Tutberidze   and Sergei Dudakov  during the women’s singles figure skating in Beijing. Photograph:   David Ramos/Getty Images

There is an elemental darkness about Kamila Valieva’s entire Olympic experience

The old rigmarole of going to the bookies seems quaint when compared to the evolving and sophisticated betting opportunities springing up online. Photograph: Getty Images

Rob Davies examines gambling culture; Patrick Foster charts his own addiction

Joe Burrow of the Cincinnati Bengals celebrating after the game against the Kansas City Chiefs at Paul Brown Stadium in Cincinnati, Ohio, on January 2th, 2022. Photograph: Andy Lyons/Getty Images

Keith Duggan: star quarterback is a good news story and the idol The Plains area needs

Wayne Rooney tore onto the scene as a 16-year-old against Arsenal who were then the yardstick. Photograph:  Mike Finn-Kelcey/Getty Images.

Amazon documentary leaves thoughts of what might have been for Wayne Rooney

Kerry and Dublin players contest possession during the AFL Division One clash at Austin Stack Park in Tralee. Photograph: Evan Treacy/Inpho

Spurned goal chances costly for Farrell’s side who trailed by whopping 13pts by half-time

Michael Fennelly: the vastly experienced former Kilkenny star has overseen an upswing in Offaly hurling’s fortunes in recent years. Photograph: Ken Sutton/Inpho

Fennelly’s Faithful outfit face formidable opener against Shefflin’s Galway in Salthill

David Clifford takes on Dublin’s Lee Gannon. Photograph: Ben Brady/Inpho

Dublin remain a deeply vulnerable animal in the cage of Division 1 football

 Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady leaves the field after his final game, a defeat to   the Los Angeles Rams. He retired after winning seven Super Bowls and setting numerous passing records in an unprecedented 22-year-career. Photograph: Mark LoMoglio/AP Photo

Quarterback’s icy farewell message showed New England fans they were his – until they weren’t

Cork manager Kieran Kingston is congratulated by  Clare manager Brian Lohan after the championship qualifier clash at the Gaelic Grounds last summer. Photograph: Tommy Dickson/Inpho

Keegan’s addition to coaching ticket a boost while Keane’s arrival increases options

“We just changed a few things around, but ultimately it was the 15 guys on the field - how they pressured, and the tackle count in the second half was immense and the turnover count was immense, and that ultimately, from an attitude point, of view was very strong.” Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Rob Hennelly’s 74th minute equaliser denied Donegal victory at Markievicz Park

Mayo’s Diarmuid O Connor challenges  Michael Murphy. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Goalkeeper’s last gasp free completes the year’s first great escape act in sodden Sligo

Armagh’s Benny Tierney helps manager Joe Kernan lift the Sam Maguire after Armagh’s historic breakthrough All-Ireland victory over Kerry in 2002. Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Fans returning to Croke Park for Dublin tie will recall a glorious decade from 1999

Rory Gallagher’s Derry are back in Division Two. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Division Two will hold no fear for Oak Leaf who have emerged from turbulent decade

Can James Horan’s Mayo take that final step in 2022? Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

James Horan’s side begin nomadic league campaign looking for that last ingredient

Top of the world: Michael Darragh Macauley with Sam in hand. File photograph: Inpho

Keith Duggan: TG4’s Laochra Gael reveals another side to one of the most memorable

Fans look on during the 2018 Munster Hurling Final between Cork and Clare at Semple Stadium. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Hanging on to the name of your stadium may become the best way of standing out from the crowd

Ciara Mageean: ‘I love being from the North! I think we are a great bunch of people. I always think the friendliest people you can meet are in Belfast.’ Photograph:   Maja Hitij/Getty Images

World and European Championships and Commonwealth Games both in her sights

The importance of putting in place a formal, state-sponsored programme to use early-days sports to promote respect and equality between young boys and girls is obvious. Photograph: Getty Images

Sport is a way to channel aggression, it pushes people into realm of mutual respect

The New York Times building in New York. Photograph:   Daniel Slim/AFP via Getty Images

New York Times has bought sports-subscription website Athletic for $550m

    Henry Shefflin appointment as Galway manager achieved the impossible: it made Galway hurling people forget that the age of Joe Canning – that wistful, gold tinted decade – had passed.  Photograph: Ken Sutton/Inpho

Excitement in maroon county as Kilkenny hurling great’s reign begins

There are three club provincial finals fixed for this weekend. Photograph: Evan Treacy/Inpho

Keith Duggan looks ahead to this weekend’s football and hurling club provincial finals

 Tom Brady accepts the Lombardi Trophy from general manager Jason Licht after the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ Super Bowl victory in February. Photograph: Cliff Welch/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

A breakthrough year for Irish women, while Osaka, Biles and Peng faced huge pressure

Photograph for Keith Duggan feature. Twin sisters Emma (left) and Kate Slevin on the grounds of Claregalway Friary. Photograph: Joe O Shaughnessy. 29 November 2021

Slevin sisters seperately achieve sporting excellence in gymnastics, soccer and GAA

Claire Melia in action against Luxembourg at the final of the FIBA Women’s European Championship for Small Countries in Nicosia, Cyprus on  July 25th. Photograph: Savvas Demetriou/FIBA/Inpho

The 6ft 3in Ireland star is happy to be a sportswoman young girls can look up to

Dunnes' father Mick was one of the creators of the idea on a wet day in Belfield

Aston Villa manager Steven Gerrard celebrates following the Premier League win over Crystal Palace. Photo: Chris Brunskill/Fantasista/Getty Images

Liverpool fans will hope that this welcome back will only be the first of many

The problem is not  confined to soccer. Gaelic games has had numerous instances of referees leaving the field feeling threatened by a crowd that has turned feral, convinced that the referee has it in for their team. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Recent decision by two juvenile leagues to ban games over a weekend shows just how serious the situation has become

Peng Shuai during her qualifying match against Nicole Gibbs for the US Open tennis tournament at the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in New York in  2019. Photograph: Demetrius Freeman/The New York Times

IOC naivety makes Olympic tradition look compromised and malleable

Garth Brooks in Croke Park in 2014 to announce his ill-fated concerts. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill/The Irish Times

Thursday’s confirmation of the two concerts was a reminder of a simpler time for all

George Hamilton was one of the few broadcaster who moved from the BBC to RTÉ. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Book review: The soccer commentator’s gossip-free memoir recalls how his career unfolded

Stephen Kenny congratulates Josh Cullen after Ireland’s win over Luxembourg. Photograph: John Walton/PA

Brady and Sadlier refuse to share their toys but all ends amicably after Luxembourg win

Cristiano Ronaldo gives his jersey to Addison Whelan (11), who ran onto the pitch after the final whistle at the World Cup qualifier between Ireland and Portugal at Aviva Stadium on Thursday night. Photograph: Ben Brady/Inpho

Keith Duggan: For 15 years he has operated in a place beyond normal existence

Stephen Kenny’s vision involves changing the country’s attitude to the game to produce future skilled superstars. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Mood under Kenny is more ambitious than simple attitude of ‘You’ll never beat the Irish’

Portugal’s Cristiano Ronaldo gives his shirt to a young Republic of Ireland fan who ran onto the pitch after the  World Cup qualifying match at the Aviva Stadium on Thursday night. Photograph: Brian Lawless/PA Wire

It ended in a scoreless draw, but the capacity crowd got plenty of entertainment

Portugal’s Cristiano Ronaldo shows his frustration  late in the game. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

What began as a murmur in empty stadiums culminated in glorious moments on Thursday night

Jim McGuinness says there is no truth to the rumours that he will be joining the Down coaching staff. Photo: Charles McQuillan/Getty Images

Former Donegal manager says he is focusing on his role at Derry City for the time being

Sonny Bill Williams: ‘Now, I don’t wake up with a hangover and feeling disgusted in myself and soulless. Now, I feel a life of empowerment.’

ABs legend speaks about journey from the side of a mountain to the top of the game

Jeff Bezos’ streaming service Amazon Prime holds the rights to the majority of this November’s international rugby matches. Photograph:  Chris Jackson/Getty Images

Thoughts need to turn to the fans who have an additional subscription but a leaner menu

For too long, basketball in Ireland has been ignored and kicked to the kerb. Photo: Oisín Keniry/Inpho

Clubs had been told they must check vaccine certs despite under-12s not being eligible

John and David Meyler after Cork’s victory in the 2018 Munster SHC final. Photograph:  Morgan Treacy/Inpho

From late night McDonald’s to games at Old Trafford - father and son have lived the dream

Andy Moran runs out at Croke Park to take on Dublin in the 2019 championship. Photograph: Tommy Dickson/Inpho

Former Mayo footballer on the struggle for Sam Maguire and his new life in coaching

It’s hard to identify precisely when the practice of children being out of doors in Ireland, all the time and in all weathers, ended. But end it did. Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

On Halloween night you’ll hear the one-off joy of kids allowed to be out in the dark

Proposal B is completely bonkers. It is absurd in the extreme, arguably the worst collective idea since the governmental tax on children’s shoes in the early 1980s. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Sideline Cut: Delegates will vote on worst collective idea since governmental tax on children’s shoes

Without question, the Leitrim lakeside town of Drumshanbo has gone through a series of pronounced iterations over the decades. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Locals of the Leitrim town reflect on how lockdowns have shaped the area and its businesses

Mickey Harte:  ‘There can be a sense of hope from difficult and dark places.’ Photograph: Matt Mackey/Inpho

The football manager looks back on the 10 turbulent years since his daughter’s murder

Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer started without Cristiano Ronaldo against Everton. Photograph: Getty Images

Vultures of impatience already beginning to circle in the grey skies over Manchester

Newcastle United fans celebrate at St James’ Park following the announcement that the Saudi-led takeover of the club has been approved. Photograph:   Owen Humphreys/PA Wire

It's easy for celebrating Toon supporters to rationalise that position in their minds

Willie Anderson during his time as Leinster defensive coach in 2004. Photograph: Andrew Paton/Inpho

Former Ireland lock’s book mixes light and dark of remarkable career on and off the pitch

 Matthew Benham:   a boy fan of Brentford since in the 1980s and now club owner, the Oxford physics graduate turned financier has  overseen the club’s rise into a Premier League side. Photograph:  Catherine Ivill/Ama/Getty  Images

Fan and owner Benham and manager Frank have overseen remarkable transformation

Easkey Britton: “ I think this is the primary motivation for most big wave surfers –  this sense of intense connection to nature that is just so powerful and going to the edge of human limits in a space that is completely beyond your control.”

Chasing big waves made sense and much of her story is rooted in her upbringing

Aidan O’Shea: the long-serving Mayo stalwart  has been subject to a lot of abuse online in the wake of  his county’s latest All-Ireland final defeat to Tyrone.  Photograph: Laszlo Geczo/Inpho

Mayo issue a statement condemning the attacks as ‘unnecessary and unacceptable’

Anya Taylor as Beth Harmon in The Queen’s Gambit. Photograph:  Charlie Gray/Netflix © 2020

Nona Gaprindashvili has taken issue with a reference made in The Queen’s Gambit

Tyrone players celebrate with the Sam Maguire after beating Mayo to win the All-Ireland. Photo: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Mayo never really showed up at Croke Park as the Red Hand put on a masterclass

Tyrone’s Peter Harte, with his daughter Ava, and Mayo’s Lee Keegan sit  on the field  and  talk quietly after the match. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Sixth All-Ireland defeat since 2011 leaves Mayo wondering when pain will end

Tyrone’s goalkeeper Niall Morgan and Ronan McNamee celebrate after beating Mayo to win the All-Ireland. Photo: Tommy Dickson/Inpho

It was a Red Hand masterclass at Croke Park while Mayo failed to show up on the big stage

Rob Hennelly kicks the late equalising free which forced extra-time for Mayo in the memorable semi-final victory over Dublin at Croke Park. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Many times during his long career the Breaffy man has stood up to be counted for the county

Owen Mulligan fires home an unforgettable solo goal against Dublin in the 2005 All-Ireland quarter-final. When Tyrone are in the mood for football and mischief it is never dull, never predictable. Photograph: Tom Honan/Inpho

Red Hand back in terrain they love today, the dark anti-hero gatecrashing the garden party

Mayo’s Stephen Coen and Paddy Durcan celebrate at the final whistle of the Connacht final. Coen wants a 70 minute performance against Tyrone this weekend. Photograph: Lorraine O’SullivanInpho

Coen is balancing his All-Ireland final countdown with the closing phases of his PhD

‘You definitely need to be a bit mad so borderline obsession is probably fair’: Mayo boss James Horan. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Manager’s even disposition a calming device through a mad football decade

Wednesday night in Portugal was a clear vision that there is another future for Irish football. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

He can send out a team designed to create chances but he can’t score the goals himself

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