15 January 2016 No Comments by The Northern Standard

MONAGHAN midfielder Owen Lennon has called it a day after announcing his retirement from playing gaelic football at any level last week. Ultimately the decision was based on medical advice as he has been suffering from a long standing ankle problem and that along with a back injury that troubled him also were the catalysts for the announcement.

Owen, one of the most influential midfielders of his time, was a central figure in the Monaghan renaissance that saw them win promotion from division 3 to division 1 in successive seasons and winning two Ulster senior football championships in the last three years. Lennon captained Monaghan in 2013 when they ended a 25 years Ulster championship famine, defeating Donegal in the final in Clones. Monaghan lost to Donegal in the 2014 final but Lennon was a central figure when they regained the title last year. As well as those championship successes he helped Monaghan win promotion in the league and figured prominently in Monaghan’s Allianz football League division 2 final victory over Donegal in Croke Park in 2014. Owen in fact has the unique distinction of being the third successive generation of his family to play inter-county football with Monaghan, following in the footsteps of his grandfather, Hughie Lennon, and his father Michael Lennon.

Already the search is on for a replacement for Owen Lennon but a player of his stature and ability will be difficult to replace. Big Mark Thornton of Rockcorry showed potential in the McKenna Cup last Sunday and Monaghan do have options as to who can be deployed in midfield with Gavin Dougan now on the way back from injury. Dick Clerkin of course is still plying his trade but no doubt Malachy O’Rourke will be looking at…


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