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22nd Jul 2023

Darragh Canavan on remembering his father play and why his football development was different than most

Lee Costello

Darragh Canavan

“I actually remember him getting sent off against Armagh.”

Darragh Canavan is making his own legacy in a Tyrone jersey, but he can remember the great teams in the noughties that his father, Peter, was a part of.

Only three years old when Tyrone won their first All-Ireland title in 2003, his memory is of course a little fuzzy on that one, even with his own dad being the captain.

2005 is a little bit clearer, but ’08 is when he really enjoyed the journey as young fan watching his county reach the ultimate heights.

Darragh won the PWC Player of the Month for June, after his unbelievable performances in the championship saw him become a star in his own right.

However, he is aware that his upbringing in the world of Gaelic football was a lot different to most, as he explains on the latest episode of the GAA Hour.

“You do realise it, especially when you’re younger. You would get men coming up to you and saying, ‘are you going to be as good as your dad?’

Darragh Canavan
Darragh Canavan is the PWC Player of the Month for June

“He (Peter) doesn’t put any pressure on me or Ruairi, or the girls, to do anything differently, or act any differently than to who we are, and it’s great to have him for advice whenever you need it.

“But he doesn’t force us to do anything, or force us to be something we’re not.”

Peter is a pundit on The Sunday Game, and has been known to highlight the few times that his son makes a mistake, not that it bothers the young Errigal Ciaran forward.

Darragh Canavan

“I’ve noticed that actually,” Canavan laughed.

“If he’s going to do it, he’s going to do it, there would be a bit of slagging about it, but that’s a part of it too. That’s his job, he’s supposed to pick out these things, so you can slag him a bit about it, but none of it is taken to heart.”

An All-Ireland champion in his own right, Darragh was a part of the team that lifted his county’s fourth Sam Maguire back in 2021 – but like all Tyrone fans, he has fond memories of that golden generation in the noughties.

Darragh Canavan

“I can remember ’05 and ’08 – ’05 a wee bit, and ’08 I remember it clearly, I was at a really good age, where you do start to get obsessed with it.

“I don’t remember too much about ’05, I remember bits of the All-Ireland final, and I actually remember him getting sent off against Armagh, which is a good memory to have.

“You just remember bits and pieces and see the odd clip on YouTube too, so it’s nice to be able to look back on them things.”

There’s no doubt that Darragh and his brother Ruairi will ave a fine selection of highlight reels for everyone to enjoy on YouTube by the the time they hang up their boots.

Until then though, we can all just enjoy the show.

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