New book chronicles exploits of great Roscommon team of 1977-1980

Proceeds to Pieta House

A big crowd was in attendance at Hannon’s Hotel in Roscommon town last Friday night for the first of three weekend launches of a new book, ‘Roscommon Football Legends’, which details the exploits of the famous Roscommon senior football team of the 1977-1980 era who won four Connacht titles in a row, a National League title and also appeared in the All-Ireland Final in 1980.

  Journalist Richard Canny compiled the book with assistance from John Benton and Billy Browne and Pieta House will benefit from profits from sales of the book. There were further launches in the Hodson Bay Hotel on Saturday night and at Kilronan Castle on Sunday evening.

  The book consists of memories from the players themselves, as well as from local journalists, officials and supporters, all of them recalling a magical time for Roscommon football. The ups and downs, the great games, great wins and the heartbreaking losses too are all detailed in the book. There are great stories, photographs and actual newspaper cuttings and programmes from the big games in what was a golden era for Roscommon football.

  Launching the book in Roscommon was former Roscommon star Seamus Hayden who recalled the great performances of that team and the life-long friendships that were created. He praised team managers Tom Heneghan and Tony Whyte, commenting that they were way ahead of their time in terms of organisation, training, tactics, etc. and he was mentioned Tom Heneghan in particular in that regard.

  Seamus agreed that it was a fantastic time for Roscommon and expressed the hope that very soon a Roscommon team would come along to emulate their achievements.

  Richard Canny spoke on behalf of the authors and said that once the idea for the book became public the material flowed in and they were overwhelmed by the goodwill that there was for the book and the team. He remembered the 1977 to 1980 period as a brilliant time for the people of the county and said he was delighted to be able to bring the book to fruition with the help of his co-authors. He said that he was very happy with the quality if the finished product.

  Ger Tiernan of Pieta House also spoke and told the attendance that as a St. Brigid’s and Roscommon man he was very proud that profits from the sale of the book would be going to Pieta House and he outlined the importance of the services being provided by Pieta House not only on a national basis but in County Roscommon as well.

  In attendance on the night were a number of the players who were on that 1977-1980 panel including John O’Gara, Tony McManus, Eamon McManus, Tom Donnellan and Sean Kilbride. Other players were present too, as were many GAA officials and supporters.

  ‘Roscommon Football Legends’, the story of the great Roscommon team of 1977-80, is on sale in all good book shops (price €20) and would make a perfect Christmas present for the Roscommon GAA followers – and remember that profits will go towards Pieta House.


List of shops stocking the book is on Roscommon Football Legends Facebook page.