Roscommon GAA

Roscommon GAA
Irish: CLG Ros Comáin
Province: Connacht
Nickname(s): The Rossies
The Sheep Stealers
County colours:          
(Black & Green until 1935)
Ground(s): Dr. Hyde Park, Roscommon
Dominant sport: Gaelic football
NFL: Division 1
NHL: Division 3A
Football Championship: Sam Maguire Cup
Hurling Championship: Nicky Rackard Cup
Ladies' Gaelic football: Brendan Martin Cup
Camogie: Kay Mills Cup
Standard kit
Regular kit
Change kit

The Roscommon County Board of the Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) (Irish: Cumann Lúthchleas Gael, Coiste Chontae Ros Comáin) or Roscommon GAA is one of the 32 county boards of the GAA in Ireland, and is responsible for Gaelic games in County Roscommon. The county board is also responsible for the Roscommon inter-county teams. In 2014 with help of sponsors and the Club Rossie initative a Roscommon GAA bus was bought to provide transport for all county teams to use.

Roscommon's Senior football team compete in the Connacht Senior Football Championship which they have won 23 times. Roscommon have won back-to-back All-Ireland Senior Football Championship titles in 1943 and 1944.

Gaelic football


o were a glamour team of the 1940s, winning back to back All Ireland's, and have contributed some of the great personalities to GAA history including 2 Presidents - Dan O'Rourke (1946–49) and Dr. Donal Keenan (1973–76).

Roscommon's rise from Junior status to Senior All-Ireland champions in the four years leading up to 1943 was one of the great romances of its time. In the All Ireland final they drew with Cavan before winning the replay with two quick goals from Frankie Kinlough and Jack McQuillan. Kinlough scored the goal and Donal Keenan the points the following year when Roscommon beat Kerry. Roscommon were captained by Jamesie Murray from Knockcroghery.

Legend tells how Roscommon lost a six-point lead in the final three minutes of the 1946 All-Ireland Senior Football Championship final against Kerry, Tom Gega O'Connor and Paddy Kennedy scoring the goals. Roscommon were beaten in the replay (Gerry Dolan made one of the greatest saves in Croke Park history against Laois in that year's semi-final). The injured team-captain, Jimmy Murray, was having blood wiped from his face to "look right" for the presentation when Kerry struck for two late equalising goals. Defeats in 1947, 1952 and 1953 semi-finals ended the party.

The 1940s successes were the pinnacle of Roscommon's achievements. They also reached the final in 1962. That year was memorable for they were losing the Connacht final to Galway by 5 points when Roscommon keeper Aidan Brady swung on the crossbar, breaking it in two. During the 15-minute wait to get it replaced, Roscommon moved the great Gerry O'Malley to midfield in a re-organisation and he inspired their comeback to enable them to win the Connacht Championship. However, Kerry, once again, led by the great Mick O'Connell defeated them in the All-Ireland final thanks in no small way to an off-the-ball incident which led to O'Malley being stretchered off very early in the game. Roscommon's next period of success came in the late 1970s when they won 4 Connacht titles on the trot from 77-80. they reached the final in 1980 against Kerry. They looked like causing an upset when John "Jigger" O'Connor's 35th-second goal helped them to an early 1-2 to 0-0 lead, but this was the Kerry team regarded as the greatest in history, and they eventually won by 1-9 to 1-6. A series of minor championships (1983, 1984, 1989 and 1992), and an All-Ireland Under-21 final in 1982, showed the impact of that success and in 1990 and 1991 Roscommon emerged from Connacht again, succumbing to Meath by a single point in the 1991 All Ireland semi-final.

Nine unsuccessful seasons followed before, in 2001, Roscommon regained the Connacht title following a brilliant win and performance over eventual All-Ireland champions Galway and a very dramatic end-of-match victory over Mayo. However, they failed to make any further progress in the 2001 All Ireland Championship and the decade that followed has been amongst the least successful in the team's history.

On the field, outside of a very exciting run in 2003, the senior team have failed to record any notable successes since their 2001 Connacht Championship title win until 2010. The success of the county's Minor team in winning the All-Ireland title in 2006 offered hope, however.

Roscommon suffered a heavy defeat to local rivals Mayo in 2009. However, they followed this result with a creditable draw against Wexford in the All Ireland Qualifiers at Wexford Park before beating the same opposition in a replay at Dr Hyde Park, Roscommon. Unfortunately, the team followed up this victory with another sizeable defeat against Meath in the following game, losing by 2-12 to 0-11. The 7 point defeat brought the curtain down on another disappointing season.

The official Roscommon G.A.A. supporters club was re-launched in March 2009. The new supporters club is proving a huge success within and outside the county. The current chairman is Kilmore man Brian Carroll. Seamus Donoghue from the Tulsk club is the current secretary and Joe Gilligan is the treasurer. In December 2009 the supporters club held its first annual Supporters club awards banquet in the Abbeyfield hotel in Ballaghaderreen. The night proved a great success. The supporters club continues to grow in strength.

In 2010 Roscommon captured their 20th Senior Connacht football title. In the first round they defeated London in Ruislip 0-14 to 0-6. In the semi final played in Dr Hyde Park Roscommon beat Leitrim 1-13 to 0-11. In the final, played in McHale Park Castlebar Roscommon overcame favourites Sligo on a scoreline of 0-14 to 0-13. Roscommon were subsequently beaten in the All-Ireland Quarter Final in Croke Park by Cork 1-16 to 0-10.

In 2011 Roscommon entered the Connacht championship as defending champions for the time in 9 years. In the first round they defeated New york in The Bronx 1-11 to 3-21. in the Semi final played in Carrick on Shannon Roscommon beat Leitrim 2-12 to 0-6. In the final, played in Hyde park Roscommon in front of wintry conditions Mayo the favourites over came Roscommon on a scoreline of 0-13 to 0-11. Roscommon's final game was a round 4 defeat to Tyrone in Croke park 1-14 to 3-19.

In 2012 after a disappointing league campaign in which the failed to secure promotion from Division 3, Roscommon were defeated comfortably by Galway and after an unexpected home victory against Armagh in the qualifiers, they yet again bowed out to Tyrone.

In 2013 Roscommon were once left disappointed as they failed to secure promotion. However, they improved slightly on 2012 form. In the championship Roscommon were given the short straw by drawing All Ireland runners up Mayo in MacHale park, after a brave 25 minutes Mayo ran out easy winners. For 3rd year running the rossies were drawn against Tyrone in the qualifiers. A brave performance by the Roscommon allowed them to run Tyrone a lot closer than expected but eventually lost out on a 0-12 to 1-7 scoreline.

In 2014 Roscommon finally gained promotion and it was done with two games to spare. In the Div three final played Croke Park Roscommon defeated Cavan 1-17 to 0-18 to win their first national senior title since 1979.

In the championship Roscommon started off with a comfortable home win against Leitrim in the semi final Roscommon played hosts to the odds on favourites Mayo. For long spells it looked like Roscommon would create the shock of the summer and led by 3 points with less than 10 minutes to play. However, Mayo used all their experienced and know how to fall over the line and win by a single point. After the disappointment of near famous win Roscommon once again had to pick themselves up for the qualifiers and it produced mixed results with an impressive win in Cavan and disappointing home defeat to an inform Armagh.

In 2015 Roscommon against all the odds gained league promotion once again in the Div two final played in Croke park Roscommon defeated Down 1-17 to 0-15.

After the league final Roscommon looked forward to their eagerly anticipated Connacht semi final against Sligo at Markievicz Park only to suffer a shock defeat to their neighbours and crash out of the Connacht championship and into the qualifiers for yet another year.

After the game former Roscommon goalkeeper Shane Curran demanded that John Evans be sacked. Roscommon had to once again pick themselves up and try to get through the qualifiers and to the All-Ireland quarter final. The qualifiers started off well for the Rossies with a promising victory over Cavan at Breffni Park. Optimism was once again restored in the Roscommon camp and fans began to dream of a first appearance in an all Ireland quarter final in five years.

In the next round of the qualifiers Roscommon drew Fermanagh in an away game in Enniskillen. Fans travelled up north to fermanagh knowing that a win would bring them one step closer to Croke Park. The game started well for Roscommon and they pretty much dominated nearly the entire game leading by six points.

But what was to occur in the last ten minutes of the game would prove to be one of the biggest upsets in Roscommon gaa history. Roscommon were in cruise control but suddenly Fermanagh were on the attack and were awarded a penalty which was calmly slotted past Roscommon keeper Darren O Malley to the back of the net by Sean Quigley. The game then swung in Fermanagh's favour and they eventually drew level with Roscommon.

There were three minutes of injury time added on at the end of the game Roscommon were under huge amounts of pressure and fermanagh came on the attack once more. Sean Quigley eventually found the ball and smashed it over the bar for the winning point and possibly the most important point in his football career with Fermangh. The referee blew for full-time and Roscommon players collapsed to the ground in agony. One of the most disappointing campaigns in the counties history had come to an abrupt end.

After the game some supporters outside the ground called it the most awful championship they had ever seen in Roscommon's history. Defeats to both Sligo and Fermanagh were deemed unacceptable and there were calls for Roscommon manager John Evans to resign.

Towards the end of the summer John Evans resigned his post as Roscommon manager. Many players and the county board expressed their disappointment saying that Evans had brought roscommon to the next level but unfortunately performances in the championship did not reflect on the standard set by the county board.

Roscommon went on the search for a new manager and eventually Kevin McStay and Fergal O Donnell were given the job as joint managers. McStay had won the all Ireland club championship with Roscommon club St Brigids in 2013. O Donnell won a Connacht championship medal with Ros in 2001 and won another nine years later this time as manAger of the team. He also won the all ireland as manager of the Roscommon minor team in 2006.


All Stars

Roscommon have 16 All Stars.

Current football squad

No. Player Position Club
1 Darren O'Malley Goalkeeper Michael Glaveys
2 David Murray Right Corner Back Pádraig Pearses
3 Seán Mullooly Full Back Strokestown
4 Niall McInerney Left Corner Back St. Brigids
5 Seán McDermott Right Half Back Western Gaels
6 John McManus Centre Back Roscommon Gaels
7 Fergal Lennon Left Half Back Clann na nGael
8 Niall Daly Midfield Pádraig Pearses
9 Cathal Compton Midfield Strokestown
10 Fintan Cregg Right Half Forward Elphin
11 Conor Devaney Centre Forward Kilbride
12 David Keenan Left Half Forward St. Barry's
13 Cathal Cregg Right Corner Forward Western Gaels
14 Senan Kilbride Full Forward St. Brigids
15 Ciaráin Murtagh (c) Left Corner Forward St. Faithleach's
No. Player Position Club
16 Geoffrey Claffey Substitute Castlerea St. Kevin's
17 Cian Connolly Substitute Roscommon Gaels
18 Diarmuid Murtagh Substitute St. Faithleach's
19 Donal Shine Substitute Clann na nGael
20 Enda Smith Substitute Boyle
21 Ian Kilbride Substitute St. Brigids
22 Kevin Higgins Substitute Western Gaels
23 Niall Carty Substitute Pádraig Pearses
24 Niall Kilroy Substitute Fuerty
25 Thomas Corcoran Substitute Strokestown
26 Ultan Harney Substitute Clann na nGael

Squad as per Roscommon v Clare, 2016 All-Ireland Senior Football Championship, 23 July 2016



Roscommon hurlers' one appearance in an All Ireland semi-final was back in 1910, when they were beaten by 10 goals to one point by Tipperary. Their biggest achievements to date are winning the All Ireland Senior B in 1994, the All Ireland Intermediate in 1999, Nicky Rackard Cup Final in 2007 and 2015,both of which were won in Croke Park. Another notable victory was the defeat of Wexford in the 1984 Centenary cup competition in 1984. They competed in the newly formed Christy Ring Cup in 2005 and 2006 but were relegated to the Nicky Rackard cup after poor performances. However, the winning of the Rackard Cup in 2007 brought jubilation and much hope for greater achievements in the future for a very committed panel of players and management.


Ladies' Gaelic football



Roscommon won the Nancy Murray Cup in 2009.[5] Four Roads reached the 2004 All Ireland junior club final.[6] and 2005[7] Oran won the Caithlín Ní Thoimín Shield at Féile na nGael in 1980 and 1982, the Division 3 shield in 1989 and 1992 and the Coiste Chontae an Chláir Shield in 2004. Four Roads went on to win the All Ireland junior club final in 2010 beating Corofin of Clare 1-09 to 0-06 and now compete in the 2012 All Ireland junior club final.

Notable players include Lizzie Glennon and Cait Kenny who are the only players from the county to be nominated for a " All-Star " & soaring star award winner[8] Niamh Coyle.

Under Camogie's National Development Plan 2010-2015, "Our Game, Our Passion,"[9] Carlow, Cavan, Laois, Louth and Roscommon are to get a total of 17 new clubs by 2015.[10]


  1. "Smith the hero as Rossies' first-half blitz proves a bridge too far for Sligo". Irish Independent. 2012-04-09. Retrieved 2012-04-09.
  2. "Roscommon claim third Connacht U21 title in five years". Hogan Stand. 2014-04-05. Retrieved 2014-04-06.
  3. "Roscommon take Connacht Under-21 title". RTÉ Sport. 2015-04-05. Retrieved 2015-04-05.
  4. "Connacht Minor Football Championship: Roscommon survive late fightback to down Mayo". 15 July 2012. Retrieved 13 June 2013.
  5. 2009 Jun A Roscommon 2-8 Armagh 3-5 report on
  6. 2004 Junior club final Leitrim 4-13 Four Roads 0-8 Four Roads report in Irish Independent
  7. 2005 junior club final Leitrim 1-8 Four Roads 1-4 report in Irish Independent and Irish Times
  8. All-stars on
  9. "Final goal for camogie". Irish Independent. Independent News & Media. 29 March 2010. Retrieved 29 March 2010.
  10. National Development Plan 2010-2015, Our Game, Our Passion information page on, pdf download (778k) from download site
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