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01st Feb 2023

Peter Canavan admits that Tyrone’s poor start to the season is “worrying”

Lee Costello

Canavan Tyrone

“They are tiring badly.”

Former Tyrone star Peter Canavan has admitted that he is “Worried” following his county’s defeat to Roscommon last weekend in the National League.

The Red Hands were three up at one stage in the second half, but then crumbled and leaked three goals, meaning that they are sitting bottom of Division One.

Of course this is only the first game, but they conceded three against Derry in the McKenna Cup final just a week earlier, meaning that they have watched helplessly as six goals penetrated their defence.

Tyrone Canavan

After guiding them to glory in 2021, joint mangers Brian Dooher and Feargal Logan could do little as their team looked a shadow of themselves the following year, crashing out of the championship in the first round of the qualifiers.

Tyrone fans have been looking for a bounce-back this season, but it certainly isn’t the start they had been hoping for.

“From a Tyrone perspective, it’s worrying,” Canavan told RTE Sport.

Tyrone Canavan

“They don’t appear to be playing as a unit at the minute. They are tiring badly. I think it’s too simplistic just to say fitness is a problem in the last couple of games.

“Unlike Dublin, for example, who had been resting a lot of players in pre-season competition – I think over three competitive games Dublin made use of 45 players – Tyrone haven’t.

“By and large they have fielded fairly strong teams in the McKenna Cup and got to the final, so we were up and running.

Tyrone Canavan

“We were expecting a victory in Roscommon.

“You talk about fine margins. We were three points up midway through the second half, Darren McCurry had a great goal chance, but the ball slipped out of his grasp and the chance of going six clear with a stiff breeze went.

“From that moment on, Roscommon took control and they were by far the better team in the last 10 minutes and deserved their victory.”

Tyrone Canavan

In round five they welcome All-Ireland champions Kerry, so the challenge is a significant one to avoid a relegation scrap.

“It’s Donegal on Sunday and it’s imperative that we get a result there and get points on the board because there are a lot of really difficult games coming up after that.

“We certainly don’t want to fighting a relegation battle come March.”

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