So, the Sam Maguire is back in Tyrone for the first time since 2008 and, with that, the curtain closes on the intercounty season. It seems a long time ago now that we were looking at grainy photos of Dublin taking part in a lockdown training session as the country remained bunkered down in their houses with the pandemic raging. At that time, few would have predicted we would be here in September with Tyrone as champions and Mayo, once again, the runners-up (although some may have predicted the second part). For Tyrone managers Feargal Logan and Brian Dooher it’s justification that the joint-manager strategy has worked and, for Logan in particular, it’s redemption after the pain of losing as a player in 1995, writes Malachy Clerkin in his column this morning. Meanwhile, Keith Duggan writes that the Red Hand finally got the chance to remind us all how well-versed they are on the big stage while, for Mayo, the same questions come up again – just where do they go from here?
Moving to soccer and Harvey Elliott’s horror injury marred Liverpool’s 3-0 win over Leeds United as Jürgen Klopp’s side maintained their strong start to the Premier League season. Pascal Struijk was shown a red card for the tackle, prompting much debate about whether it was a harsh decision or not. In his column this morning, Ken Early writes that players in incidents like the one Elliott was involved in do not get enough protection from referees. The ‘let it flow’ attitude that permeates English football is self-defeating nonsense which stems from British obsession with remembering when football was “a man’s game”. On Saturday, Cristiano Ronaldo made a glorious return to Old Trafford with a brace of goals helping his side to a 4-1 win over Newcastle. However, this morning Jonathan Wilson writes that the hero worship of the Portuguese does not mask United’s flaws.