Power hopes Ryan's recruitment will help Tipp footballers
By John Harrington
Tipperary manager, David Power, is hopeful that new recruit Philip Ryan can make a positive impressive for the Premier County Footballers this year.
Ryan was full-forward on the Dublin U-21 team that won the 2012 All-Ireland title and was also a member of the 2015 All-Ireland winning senior panel.
The St. Brigid’s club-man qualifies for Tipperary because of his strong family connections to the county.
“His father is from Tipp, Tommy Ryan,” says Power, who this week was announced as the Gaelic Writers' Association Football Personality of the Year for 2020.
“His uncle (Dinny) was on the 1971 team that won the All-Ireland hurling with Tipp. I think he scored the winning goal, or he scored a goal anyway.
“He has strong Tipp roots there.
“So really at the start of this year, he decided to give it a go with Tipp. So that’s how it came about.
“To be fair to Philip he has a hunger that he wants to achieve at senior inter-county level.
“I suppose he wants to prove to himself that he is at that standard, so we are certainly going to give him that opportunity
“Hopefully, if he is with us for the next couple of years we will see big benefits from being involved with a serious set-up like Dublin.
“He is a great lad. He is really looking hard and he is looking forward to getting some game time during the League.”
Conor Bowe is another interesting addition to the Tipperary football panel for 2021.
Better known for his hurling exploits, the Moyne Templetuohy clubman won an All-Ireland U-20 title in 2019 when he was also voted as Munster U-20 Hurler of the Year.
“For the last number of years the dual thing hasn’t really been allowed in Tipperary, so, unfortunately, he hasn’t played at minor or under-21 football for Tipperary,” says Power of Bowe.
“He was playing senior club football for his club Moyle Templetuohy last year and he caught our eye.
“We asked him in and he was delighted to be getting involved. He has trained really hard. We’ll see where things take him.”
Tipperary won their first Munster Senior Football Championship in 85 years last year, and when the players returned to training recently after lockdown there was still a bounce in their step.
“There was a great positivity,” says Power. “There was a great buzz. I think they were just tired of training by themselves.
“To be fair to Robbie Cannon, the strength and conditioning coach, Amy Maguire the nutritionist and Susan Giblin, the performance coach, they did great work offseason and the lads have come back in really good shape, from a conditioning point of view and hopefully now they will continue on with the type of work they are putting in, starting on Saturday with Limerick.
“That’s the big one for us. We can’t look beyond the Limerick match.
“This year we are probably going to be favourites in the opening three league matches and Tipp have struggled in those situations for the last number of years.
“I think we have to use the confidence of winning the Munster Championship last year in the right way.”
Tipperary beat Limerick by just a single point after extra time in last year’s Munster semi-final and Power is anticipating another close battle in Semple Stadium later today.
He’s very aware too that though this is only the first match of the season, it could well set the tone for what follows it.
“To be fair now what I have seen in the last couple of weeks, there is certainly a hunger there and we definitely won’t be taking Limerick for granted after what happened in the Munster semi-final, it was a very tight affair.
“We played Offaly in the first league match back after Covid last year We won that match and we went on a five-match winning streak, which is tough going for Tipp football. It’s not usual that you’d get a run like that.
“The importance of this first game, if you can get that win, not so much the performance.
“The way the League is this year, it’s about getting results to be honest with you, and hopefully the performance will start looking after itself over time.”