Mayo 0-15 Tyrone 2-14: Tyrone player ratings

Eamon Donoghue hands out the marks for the champions after five point win over Mayo

Tyrone’s goalkeeper Niall Morgan and full back Ronan McNamee both played excellently in their team’s win over Mayo. Photograph: Laszlo Geczo/Inpho

1 Niall Morgan - He made an excellent save to deny Bryan Walsh, made himself big for the penalty and he drove forward to help his backs break the Mayo press. Also kicked 0-3 from placed balls in an all action display. Rating: 9

Niall Morgan celebrates his side’s first goal. Photo: Laszlo Geczo/Inpho

2 Michael McKernan - He kept Tommy Conroy quiet by reducing his touches, marking him tightly and making him do the defending by being a constant outlet along the wings. Mayo's forwards scored only 0-4 in total from play. Rating: 7

3 Ronan McNamee - The Tyrone full back must be the envy of most counties nationwide, with the instincts of a traditional number three but the pace to deal with the modern demands of the position. His full body block on Aidan O'Shea sums him up. Rating: 8

4 Pádraig Hampsey - The Tyrone captain kicked a magical outside of the boot point in the first half, he was also involved in the first goal. Machine-like he transitions from defence to attack time after time, always in control, the prototype Tyrone footballer. Rating: 8


5 Frank Burns - He plays on the edge, and paid the price with a yellow and then the concession of a penalty with a pick up off the ground. Like so many of his team mates his versatility means he rarely plays the same role in consecutive matches but he always puts the game plan first. Rating: 7

6 Peter Harte - The 30 year-old caught a ball in the Mayo square to win and convert a mark in the 65th minute. In injury time he ended a goal chance, cutting out Aidan O'Shea's pass inside. An all round selfless performance. Rating: 7

7 Kieran McGeary - Tyrone's best player this year, this wasn't his best game although he still worked himself into the ground. He kicked a wonderful curling point from distance in the first half. Rating: 7

8 Brian Kennedy - Tyrone matched Mayo in the middle third, especially under the kickout which was an area they were supposed to be well beaten in. For that, and keeping Matthew Ruane so quiet, his performance was decisive. Rating: 8

9 Conn Kilpatrick - The midfielder's contribution is constantly overlooked but he's transformed this Tyrone team. He contested everything, ran hard to link the play and used his pace to track Mayo's key men in the middle third to the point of complete frustration. His catch and equally impressive first time offload was the winning of the game. Rating: 8

10 Conor Meyler - Meyler puts in a serious shift game in game out, leading the transitions from his full back line one minute, and getting at the end of them the next. His pass for Cathal McShane's goal showed what an intelligent player he is, while his pass for Darragh Canavan's goal chance was even better. Rating: 8

11 Michael O'Neill - His role in the Tyrone system is crucial. Positionally he covers the key defensive zones, can pop into the half back line at ease to facilitate match ups, and uses the ball efficiently. Rating: 7

12 Niall Sludden - He worked his socks off and scored two beautiful points at an important stage as Tyrone pushed on in the first half. As well as making a goal line clearance. His ability to ride the contact and use the ball intelligently helped Tyrone to transition at pace amid the chaos. Rating: 8

Tyrone’s Niall Sludden blocks the ball on the line to deny Conor Loftus a goal. Photograph: Tommy Dickson/Inpho

13 Darren McCurry - Constantly out in front giving his team mates an easy out ball, McCurry finished off an excellent championship with 1-4. Two frees, hard running for the goal. Sharp reactions for his points from play. He almost had another goal too. Rating: 8

14 Matthew Donnelly - He'd have been disappointed to depart with over 25 minutes left, after scoring an excellent first half point and showing well throughout. He struggled to make a major impact but still worked relentlessly, tracking runners and creating space inside. Rating: 6

15 Conor McKenna - Not his best performance. McKenna had a quiet game despite trying everything he could to force his way into it. Two wides he'd expect to convert in the second half, but when it mattered most he had the speed and composure to make the second goal. Rating: 6


The timing of Tyrone's substitutions were again spot on. Getting Cathal McShane on the field so early on especially, while their faith in Conor McKenna was justified with his role in the second goal. They got their defensive match ups right, varied things with the restarts but still stuck to their system and got their players to commit to the same. Rating: 8


The Tyrone bench provided 1-1 and Darragh Canavan could've easily added another goal to that. Ben McDonnell came on and was full of running, Paul Donaghy showed strength and confidence in possession, while bringing on Tiernan McCann in added time showed their strength in depth. Rating: 8

Eamon Donoghue

Eamon Donoghue

Eamon Donoghue is a former Irish Times journalist