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Donnelly: Tyrone restored pride after previously ‘lacking defiance’

Tyrone star Mattie Donnelly reflects on the Red Hands’ troubles in recent weeks, and says that the win over Kerry restored pride

Mattie Donnelly Tyrone

Coming into round five of the Allianz Football League, Tyrone looked a shadow of their former selves.

The Red Hands were rooted to the bottom of the Division 1 table, and were outclassed by Mayo last weekend.

However, they turned that around in style at home to Kerry on Saturday. Whatever it is about facing the green and gold jersey, Tyrone always seem to get the best out of themselves.

Mattie Donnelly and Darragh Canavan led the charge, as they out-scored the reigning All-Ireland champions.

At full-time, man of the match Donnelly made it clear just how satisfying the victory was.

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“Just doing what Tyrone teams do,” he told TG4.

“It was probably missing the last few weeks when things were going against us. The last 18 months, when things were going against us, we probably showed a lack of defiance. And that’s not what we’re built on, that’s not what we’re about. And it’s just getting back to basics and getting back to what makes Tyrone teams. And that’s what it was today.

“We stuck at it. We dug in. We worked for each other. The crowd got us over the line too. It’s just good to be back and restoring a bit of pride in the Tyrone jersey.

“One thing that let us down the last few weeks was when we conceded a goal, we probably let it get on top of us and we unravelled a bit. We stuck to what we’re good at, we stuck to what we’re made of, and it has seen us through today thank God.”

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Tyrone are not out of the woods just yet, as far as relegation is concerned. They will need to continue their resurgence in their final two games against Monaghan and Armagh in the coming weeks, as they close out their campaign.

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