CATHERINE MCGOURTY: The advantages of playing at home

1930 – Uruguay, 1934 – Italy, 1966 – England, 1974 – West Germany, 1978 – Argentina, 1998 – France. I think anyone reading this piece that is interested in sport will recognise that the years identified are World Cup years and the winners from the competition in that year. What I also find interesting is […]

McCartan calls a halt to second stint in charge of Down

JAMES McCartan has stepped aside as manager of the Down senior football team. The two-time All-Ireland winner was reappointed for a second stint in charge of the side at the end of last year, but endured a tricky time of things, encapsulated by relegation to Division Three. They also struggled to leave an imprint on […]

IN FOCUS: The Paddy Tally factor

Paddy Tally heads back to All-Ireland final this weekend. Michael McMullan looks at what he has brought to Kerry’s challenge. ONLY Darren McCurry and Cormac Costello have managed to score a goal from play against Kerry this year. The fact both moments could be argued as contenders for goal of the year speaks volumes for […]

Opinion: Time for Down to collectively take stock

By Michael McMullan TRANSITION is a dangerous word in sport. It’s often offering a safety blanket, unfurled to cushion failure. If used correctly, it manages realistic expectations. Advertisement Equally dangerous is talk of two, three, five and ten-year plans for development. It always passes the buck, unless there is substance. When James McCartan was appointed […]

Late MacManus frees earn Down win over Kerry to book final spot

NFL Division 2A Down 1-19 Kerry 0-20 By Michael McMullan TWO frees from Oisin MacManus shot Down to victory over Kerry and into top spot in windy conditions at Ballycran on Saturday afternoon. Advertisement It booked Ronan Sheehan’s side a place in the promotion final and gives them a crack at promotion to Division One. […]

BBC coverage a positive reflection on Down hurlers says Sheehan

National Hurling League Division 2A Down v Kerry Saturday, Ballycran, 2pm By Shaun Casey DOWN’S crucial clash with Kerry will be streamed live on the BBC iPlayer this weekend, which is “indicative of the improvement that Down hurling has made” according to their boss Ronan Sheehan. “It’s just probably a pity it’s the week that […]

McCartan wants players to embrace relegation pressure

National Football League Division Two Down v Offaly Saturday, Páirc Esler, 5pm By SHAUN CASEY JAMES McCartan hopes his Down side can “embrace” the relegation pressure that currently hangs over them to earn their first win of the season against Offaly on Saturday. The Mourne men sit on one point along with Offaly and Cork […]