Gritty Monaghan dig deep to hand Kerry second straight home league defeat
Kerry 1-10 Monaghan 2-8
Monaghan ground out a dramatic one point win to secure a second successive league win on Kerry soil.
Following up from their win in Tralee in 2015, the Farney men conquered Killarney to keep their unbeaten record intact after three rounds.
Malachy O’Rourke’s side produced a typically efficient display against a Kerry side who finished the day with 14 men after Bryan Sheehan was sent off just seconds after coming on late in the day.
Gavin Doogan’s goal was the crucial score of the second half while Conor McManus weighed in with two long range points to help Monaghan over the line despite a late Kerry surge that saw them cut the gap to the minimum late on. However they couldn't get any closer than that and there will be much head scratching in the Kingdom after a game that saw them manage just two points from play over the 70 minutes.
The first half was a dour affair. Monaghan, playing into a stiff wind, were happy to hold on to possession as much as possible and they picked off the first two scores of the game.
Kerry struggled to build any meaningful attack in the opening ten minutes but when they did, Paul Murphy’s snap shot at goal came back off the post.
David Moran got them off the mark with a brilliant goal after a flowing move that went almost the length of the field on 14 minutes.
Paul Geaney then missed a gilt edged goal chance as Kerry opened up a five point lead but the Farney men weren’t done. McManus got beyond the Kerry cover only to see his shot well saved by Brendan Kealy. However, Jack McCarron was on hand to gather the rebound to goal and throw his side a lifeline. Kieran Hughes and Paul Geaney (free) swapped scores to send Kerry in leading by 1-5 to 1-3 at the break after a half that saw the home side notch seven wides.
Given the conditions, Monaghan looked to be in a good position at the start of the second half time. And while Kerry improved a little, they couldn’t do enough damage up front to topple Monaghan.
SCORERS - Monaghan: J McCarron 1-3 (1f), G Doogan 1-0, C McManus, K Hughes 0-2 each, R Beggan (1f) 0-1.
Kerry: P Geaney (3f), J O’Donoghue (3f) 0-3 each, D Moran 1-0, P Murphy, T Morley, B Kealy (1f), BJ Keane (1f) 0-1 each.
Monaghan: R Beggan; F Kelly, D Wylie, R Wylie; K Duffy, J Mealiff, C Walshe; D Hughes, K Hughes; K O’Connell, S Carey, G Doogan; D Malone, J McCarron, C McManus SUBS: N McAdam for Walshe (28), R McAnespie for D Hughes, O Duffy for Mealiff (both HT), C McCarthy for Duffy (45), T Kerr for Malone (65),
Kerry: B Kealy; S Enright, M Griffin, K Young; T Morley, P Crowley, R Shanahan; D Moran, J Barry; J Lyne, P Murphy, K McCarthy; J Savage, P Geaney, J O’Donoghue SUBS: S O’Brien for Savage (HT), BJ Keane for Geaney (50), A Spillane for McCarthy (53), A Maher for Barry (55 BC), D O’Sullivan for Crowley (61), B Sheehan for Moran (65).
Referee: D O’Mahoney (Tipperary)