Big test for Roscommon in their search for silverware

A rapidly improving Roscommon face Tyrone in the inaugural All Ireland Under 17 Final at Croke Park on Sunday, throw-in 11.45am.

It has been a hugely encouraging campaign for Liam Tully’s team, who followed up their Connacht success by beating a fancied Kerry team in a dramatic semi-final in Ennis.

Now Roscommon are hoping to secure silverware at GAA headquarters, but they will face a formidable test against Tyrone, who produced an impressive performance when beating Meath at the penultimate stage, coming away worthy 1-14 to 0-10 winners.

Roscommon, though, have plenty of talented attacking options up front, with Paul Carey and Peter Gilhooley excellent in the Kerry triumph.

That match highlighted the potential that exists within this Roscommon group and Gilhooley’s last gasp goal sealed a brilliant victory.

Every time Kerry came thundering back, Roscommon found a response, so the Connacht champions are entering this decider full of confidence.

Ethan Jordan netted Tyrone’s only goal in their victory over Meath. Tyrone are an extremely well organised team so Roscommon must be clinical throughout.

Tyrone only led by two points with 20 minutes remaining, but they pulled clear in impressive fashion late on.

Darragh Canavan is a potent threat up front, while Jordan, Thomas Hoy, and substitute Ryan McCabe are all capable footballers.

Midfielders Matthew Murnaghan and Joe Oguz are other highly rated players in the Tyrone camp.

Reaching this final is a reflection of the significant work being carried out in clubs in Roscommon.

From the 19 players that saw action in the Kerry success, 11 different clubs were represented at various stages.

Since 2004, Roscommon have contested 10 Connacht U21 finals, winning four, and nine western minor deciders, earning three victories.

Solid and consistent teams are being produced ensuring the future looks bright. An All Ireland Under 17 title would add another layer of satisfaction this weekend.

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