McAliskey, McClure & McNulty leave Tyrone squad

Clone trio Connor McAliskey, Declan McClure and Danny McNulty have opted out of the Tyrone squad after struggling to get game time this season.

McAliskey had just re-joined the panel, having decided to take a break in November 2019.

He missed last season, but ended his brief exile when invited to return by new manager Feargal Logan and Brian Dooher ahead of the current campaign.

However, he has not featured in any of the three National Football League games to date, sitting out the clashes with Donegal, Armagh and
Monaghan.

One of the county’s most talented attackers, his decision highlights the wealth of quality within the squad and the battle faced by all those involved to force their way into the team.

Along with club-mate McNulty, he has been competing with more than a dozen other top class forwards for places in the Red Hand attacking unit.

The management have at their disposal an embarrassment of riches to choose from, including Darren McCurry, Mark Bradley, Conor McKenna, Darragh Canavan, Mattie Donnelly, Kieran McGeary, Conor Meyler, Ronan O’Neill, Peter Harte, Niall Sludden and Lee Brennan.

Newcomer Paul Donaghy has also made a major impact in his first season, scoring ten points on his debut against Donegal, while All-Star full forward Cathal McShane is on the verge of a comeback from injury, and could make an appearance in Saturday’s NFL Division One semi-final against Kerry.

Midfielder McClure is the only one of the Clonoe three to have seen game time this season, having started the Athletic Grounds clash with Armagh.

But he too has faced fierce competition against a host of contenders pressing for inclusion in the central sector.

A variety of players have featured at midfield on the three games to date, including Frank Burns, Brian Kennedy, Mattie Donnelly, Richie Donnelly, Conor McKenna and McClure himself.

The departure of McAliskey, McClure and McNulty opens up opportunities for others to break into the Tyrone squad in the weeks ahead.

But the development also represents a boost for their club, meaning Clonoe will be at full strength for all of their league games, including the ‘starred’ ties which are played without county players.