Possession is nine tenths of the law or so it is claimed but in Gaelic Football it is turning over the opposition’s possession that gives you real ownership of the game. Tyrone’s ten point win over Meath was a serious statement of intent and was backed up by a ball winning bonanza of turnovers tonight. The number of times that Tyrone players prevented Meath from making progress in possession was very impressive and hugely telling about which team was working hardest but the number of actual turnovers in the tackle must have been well into double figures. Rarely can a Meath team have looked so insipid as they did in Healy Park and rarely has a Tyrone team won so comfortably while almost pulling up against a team from the Royal County.
Tyrone have always found Meath to be very difficult opponents in the past and just last year they played out a thrilling final day draw in Navan. Tonight’s game was in total contrast as Tyrone out thought and out fought a much bigger and more physical Meath team all over the park. Mickey Harte has been critical of his side at times this year for their failure to maintain their dominance for the entire seventy minutes. At times it appeared that they switched off in the second half of some games and almost paid the price.
Well there was no switching off against Meath as The Royals were well and truly put to the sword by a Tyrone team who played like demons throughout. This was clearly illustrated by the incessant running and tackling all over the field which resulted in several Meath players being forced into spilling the ball in the tackle and Tyrone counter attacking at ferocious pace. It is a very impressive sight watching disciplined tackling and waves of white shirted players bursting forward in support once they had won possession. Hopefully we will get to see more of it as the season goes on and the league final is not the only final we line out in this year.