LAST weekend proved to any doubters out there just how special and ultra-competitive our Ulster Club Championship season is up here.
When you look through all of the games last weekend, you would have witnessed everything that we like about Gaelic games and credit to all the clubs involved.
Let’s start with the most controversial game, given all the talk that took place last week about Jerome Johnson stepping down as Ballybay joint-manager.
I touched on this last week, but let me state again that I believe that Jerome did the correct thing and even more so if this issue was highlighted by himself before he took the job so I applaud him for his decision.
The talk last week was that this decision would galvanise Ballybay and give them a cause to fight for. But, in the back of my mind, I knew that Kilcoo would have something to say about this and I imagine that they used all of that negative talk as a motivational tool heading into that game.
Kilcoo turned up last weekend, and when they do the opposition don’t really come into it because when they are in the game they are next to impossible to stop.
Donegal champions Glenties crashed out at the first hurdle at the hands of Cargin up in Corrigan Park and this game looked like a classic.
The Donegal men looked home and hosed on a number of occasions, but this Cargin team just refused to wilt and they showed tremendous character to dig their way back into the game on at least two occasions if not more.
They are a tough bunch up there and given the nature of their hunger, desire and their comeback, they truly deserved the win.
The game most people are speaking about this week was the clash of Derry champions Glen and Tyrone powerhouse Errigal Ciaran.
I thought that this game was pulsating from start to finish and it had absolutely everything you want from a game of football.
The two Canavans were a joy to watch and some of their scoring and spatial awareness was straight out of the top drawer.
If Darragh can stay fit and Ruairi can join him in the Tyrone set up, then I think we are in for an exciting few years watching Tyrone play because these lads just ooze class.
When watching Glen this year it’s clear that they have learned some valuable lessons from their journey into Ulster last season and I’m sure they have their sights set on the big prize.
They have power and pace coming from every angle and at the minute they have the best midfielder in the country in Conor Glass. He drives his team on, time after time. From listening to his interview after the game, it’s clear that they want a crack at Kilcoo and I have no doubt that these two will meet down the line and what a contest we should have in store.
Both teams must navigate their way through their next tough encounter when Gowna and Cargin come to the table, but there’s just something about these two teams that sets them apart from anything else I have seen this season and they will be very hard to stop.
At this time of the year you get a glimpse of what else is out there and although there are some exciting teams on the scene – the likes of Kilmacud Crokes and Moycullen – but I firmly believe that whoever comes out of Ulster will be extremely hard to beat this season and that’s great for this province.