Henry Downey

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Henry Downey
Personal information
Irish name Anraí Ó Domhnaigh
Sport Dual player
Football Position: Centre back
Hurling Position: Half-forward
Born (1966-12-27) December 27, 1966 (age 50)
Lavey, County Londonderry, Northern Ireland
Height 5 ft 9 in (1.75 m)
Years Club
Club titles
  Football Hurling
Derry titles 4 12
Ulster titles 2 0
All-Ireland titles 1 0
Years County
1988-2001 (F) Derry (F)
Derry (H)
Inter-county titles
  Football Hurling
Ulster Titles 2 0
All-Ireland Titles 1 0
League titles 4
All-Stars 1 0

Henry Downey (Irish: Anraí Ó Domhnaigh; born 27 December 1966) is an Irish former dual GAA player, who is most notable for being a Gaelic footballer for the Derry senior football team in the late 1980s, 1990s and early 2000s, where he usually played in at centre half back. He was part of Derry's 1993 All-Ireland Championship winning side, where he was captain. He also won two Ulster Senior Football Championships (1993 and 1998) and four National League (1992, 1995, 1996 and 2000) medals with Derry.

Football career[edit]

Downey played club football and hurling with Erin's Own GAC Lavey, with whom he won the 1991 All-Ireland Senior Club Football Championship. He was one of very few players in Ireland to complete this unique double of club and inter-county All-Irelands and almost did the extreme rarity of winning both competitions in the same year in 1993, but Lavey were defeated in the All-Ireland club after winning the Ulster Senior Club Football Championship for the second time. Downey also won four Derry Senior Football Championship and 12 Derry Senior Hurling Championship medals with Lavey.

Some of his key attributes included his leadership qualities and his surging runs up the field from the half back line.[1]


Downey was part of the Derry side which won four national leagues in eight years (1992, 1995, 1996 and 2000), captaining the team in 1992 and 1996. Downey and Derry finished runners-up to Offaly in the 1998 National League decider.[2]

In addition to his All-Ireland Club medal and two Ulster Club Championship medals he had massive success at Derry Championship level. He won four Derry Senior Football Championship, two Derry Minor Football Championships and twelve Derry Senior Hurling Championships.

Downey won an All-star in 1993 at centre back and was named 1993 Texaco Footballer of the Year. He also won Footballer of the Year at the 1993 Ulster GAA Writer's Association Awards.[3]


Downey attended school at St. Patrick`s College in Maghera, with whom he won two consecutive MacRory Cups (1984 and 1985). The school went on to be runners-up in the 1984 Hogan Cup final. He attended Queens University Belfast and while there won the Sigerson Cup.

Hurling career[edit]

Among Downey's hurling honours was winning the Ulster Under 21 Hurling Championship with Derry in 1986, defeating Antrim and Down along the way. He scored 0-12 against Antrim in the semi-final at Loughguile, with his brother Seamus scoring 1-03 in a 2-20 to 1-06 victory. They beat Down in the final after a reply; 3-09 to 1-02.[4]






  • Railway Cup - Winner (?) - 1998, 2000 (captain), more?



  • Texaco Footballer of the Year: 1993
  • All Star - Winner (1): 1993
  • All Star - Nominated (runner up): 1992, more?
  • Captain Derry Ulster and All-Ireland winning side: 1993
  • Captain Derry National League winning sides: 1992, 1996
  • Derry Senior football captain: 1991-1994, 1996





  • Combined Universities - Winner (1): Year?

Note: The above lists may be incomplete. Please add any other honours you know of.


  1. ^ Rodgers, Alan (10 October 2008). "Experts say Tyrone rank among the best". Gaelic Life. pp. 20–21. 
  2. ^ "Lyons' pride pass tough test of character to land League". Irish Examiner. 1998-04-27. Archived from the original on 2009-09-03. Retrieved 2008-04-06. 
  3. ^ "Ulster GAA Writer's Association Awards - 1993". Archived from the original on 2008-07-24. Retrieved 2007-09-11. 
  4. ^ "Will Derry be singing the Blues at Newry?". The Mid-Ulster Observer. 2007-08-16. 

External links[edit]

Gaelic games
Preceded by
Anthony Molloy
All-Ireland Senior Football
winning captain

Succeeded by
D. J. Kane
Preceded by
Mickey Linden
Texaco Footballer of the Year
Succeeded by
Martin McHugh
Preceded by
Derry senior football captain
Succeeded by
Tony Scullion
Preceded by
Tony Scullion
Derry senior football captain
Succeeded by
Kieran McKeever