MONAGHAN MIDFIELDER DICK Clerkin says that Tyrone are in untouchable in their status as the greatest team of their generation.
Mickey Harte’s men travel to Killarney this evening to face Kerry in an all-or-nothing football qualifier.
The rivalry between the two sides is well stewed at this stage with the teams having played out numerous classic already this century and, having played against both outfits, Clerkin is in no doubt as to who was the tougher opponent.
“I always feel that if you want to be the best you have to beat the best and for me that’s why Tyrone will always be the best team because they won the key battles. ” Said the midfielder during his appearance on TV3′s The GAA Show.
“They also had the more difficult circumstances to play in in that time.” He added, “For me, the 2005 Tyrone team was unrivalled over that whole generation, having played against both teams. There’s no touching that team.”
Clerkin went on to highlight the healthy mixture of ‘spite’ and ‘respect’ involved in this particular north/south rivalry, adding that the competitiveness encountered benefited both sides.
Though Kerry will line out in front of their home support in the Fitzgerald Stadium many have have talked down their chances after a somewhat fortunate win over Westmeath.
Clerkin, however, felt last week’s game would have little bearing on this Titanic clash, comparing the Kingdom to a dynasty in another code across the water:
“I wouldn’t be overly concerned from a Kerry point of view by the way they played against Westmeath. You used to talk about Manchester United and Alex Ferguson’s team; it was a great sign of them when they won playing poorly and it is a good sign of a team when you can still grind out a result while playing poorly.
“They were missing a lot of key players as well.”
You can catch The GAA Show every Friday night on TV3 or watch it back here.