Wednesday 21 February 2018

Flynn furore will not affect rematch, insist Moorefield

Cliona Foley

Cliona Foley

ANY previous bad blood between his team and Portlaoise hasn't been mentioned in the run-up to tomorrow's Leinster Club SFC semi-final meeting, according to Moorefield manager Luke Dempsey.

The sides last met in 2010 in a Leinster game which has some bad memories for the Kildare champions because they had cut a seven-point deficit to two when Daryl Flynn was sent off on a second yellow card, against which Moorefield strongly protested.

Flynn subsequently received a six-month ban for an exchange with the referee, shortened by just a month after a lengthy appeal.

The controversy overshadowed a fine game which Portlaoise edged 2-11 to 0-14, but Dempsey, who was not in charge then (Jack Sheedy was at the helm) says that whatever happened in 2010 has no relevance to tomorrow's game.

"I'm working with a great bunch of lads who are looking forward, not back, and anything that happened before hasn't been mentioned once," he said.

"There's a good referee in charge in David Coldrick but, in any case, I'm sure there won't be any problems."

After beating arch-rivals Sarsfields in the Kildare final, Moorefield crushed Wexford's St Martin's 2-13 to 0-4 and in Ronan Sweeney, Adam Tyrrell, Ciaran Kelly and Niall Hurley-Lynch, they have plenty of fire-power.


But their performance last time out has given Dempsey a selection headache as David Whyte's performance off the bench – scoring a goal and two frees – was particularly impressive.

The former county player missed the Kildare final as he was away on elite Ranger training with the army but he has played himself back into the reckoning. Flynn also missed the victory over Sarsfields as he was on honeymoon.

He was back in time for the St Martin's game but the Kildare champions have lost two key defenders since the county final.

Centre-back Ian Lonergan is out with a torn calf muscle, while corner-back Lee Murphy tore his cruciate in training.

With nearly 30 scores between them in the last game, another rip-roaring Midlands derby is likely.

"We'd probably have preferred either Vincent's or Summerhill because Portlaoise are just so experienced and loaded with inter-county players," Dempsey said.

"They've got Brian McCormack, Craig Rogers, Cahir Healy, Paul Cahillane, Brian Glynn, an inter-county midfield, and players like Kevin Fitzpatrick on their bench.

"I was in Longford to see them last week and, after going eight points down, they still came back and won in extra-time, they just wouldn't give up.

"Portlaoise will be favourites but we're just one game away from a Leinster final and that will be driving us on."

Irish Independent

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