The Best XV I have Played Against: PJ Gallagher

PJ Gallagher has enjoyed a long and fruitful career with Red Hugh’s and is a club stalwart.

He was given his debut by the late Hughie Gillespie, and has been playing adult football for 29 years.

Gallagher has represented the Donegal Masters team, and intends to continue playing reserve football for his club in 2021.

He has faced some top quality players over the course of his career and has this week picked the best fifteen he has faced, with honourable mentions for Paul Curran (Robert Emmets/Donegal Boston), Declan Bonner (Na Rossa), Frank Ward (Glenfin), Eamon McMenamin (Sean MacCumhaill’s), Barry Porter (Lifford/Owen Roes), Paul McGonigle (Buncrana), and Paddy Hegarty (Naomh Columba).


Michael Boyle in action

Michael Boyle (Termon)

Michael makes it look easy from between the sticks – superb with kick-outs.

Barry Tinney (St Eunans’s)

Barry was a tight marker and I had quite a few battles with him and St Eunan’s when we were up there. A good honest player.

Liam Ward (Glenfin)

Liam taught me a lot as a young fella and I have the marks to prove it still!A sound man.

John Joe Doherty

John Joe Doherty (Naomh Columba)


Although he always played full-back, when you turned as a corner-forward you always seemed to turn into John Joe.

Shaun T Carlin (Robert Emmets)

Shaun T didn’t say too much and let his football do the talking. There was no stopping him going forward. RIP Shaun T.

Jason Gallen (St Davog’s Aghyaran)

‘Digger’ would chat and torture you from the start of the game to the end, but a good fella off the field.

Martin Shovlin (Naomh Ultan)

Easiest decision on the team, a real legend of a player, as hard as they come and a gentleman.

Stephen McDermott

Stephen McDermott (Glenfin)

Stephen was a super all-round player and did well for Glenfin and Donegal.

Michael McGinty (Sean MacCumhaills/Donegal Boston)

‘Sticks’ was as good a fielder of the ball out there and he could play as well.

Mark Boyle (Killybegs)

I remember the pitch was even narrowed to keep an eye on Mark in the championship in the Cross!

Pauric Gillespie (Naomh Columba)

A super player with a super left foot. A real handful to mark in the forward line.

David Walsh.

David Walsh (Naomh Bríd)

David always had goal on his mind and often got it. Great player.

Mickey Linden (Down)

I was lucky enough to play against Mickey two seasons ago in a Masters charity match. Left foot, right foot, any side of the field he scored, thank God I didn’t play against him twenty years ago.

Brendan Devenney (Naomh Colmcille/St Eunan’s)

I played against Brendan when he was with Naomh Colmcille, a real handful and we all know an eye for goal. He’s now a Eunan’s legend. A good lad too.

2 November 2008; Brendan Devenney, St Eunan’s Letterkenny, celebrates after his sides second goal. AIB Ulster Senior Club Football Championship Quarter-Final, Clonoe O’Rahilly’s v St Eunan’s Letterkenny, Healy Park, Omagh, Co. Tyrone. Picture credit: Oliver McVeigh / SPORTSFILE

Manus Boyle (Killybegs)

I couldn’t pass Manus for this number, we certainly would have had at least two senior championships in the Cross if it wasn’t for the boot of Manus.

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