Injury-time fury for Longford after narrow Louth defeat
Louth 0-11 Longford 0-10
Louth hung on by the narrowest of margins to defeat Longford and make it two wins from two.
The fourth official indicated four minutes of stoppage time, but with Longford in possession Monaghan referee Niall McKenna blew up a minute early, to the fury of Longford's management and players.
Playing with a strong wind, Louth made a fine start to the game and drew Longford into conceding three early frees, which Ryan Burns slotted over, before a point from Pauric Smith in the 10th minute gave them a four-point lead.
A nice point from Burns was then sandwiched between two Robbie Smyth frees as Longford tried to get to grips with the game. Jim McEneaney and Derek Maguire then hit points for the Wee County but another Smyth free saw Longford trail 0-7 to 0-4.
Longford were dealt a blow in the 39th minute when John Keegan was harshly shown a black card and they struggled in midfield thereafter, but Louth also lost Bevan Duffy to a black card in the 58th minute.
Fine points from Padraig McCormack and Smyth cut the gap to three and two frees from Smyth and Sean McCormack left it a one-point game in stoppage time but their comeback hopes were ended by the early whistle.
Scorers - Louth: R Burns 0-5 (3fs), J McEneaney 0-2, D Maguire, T Durkin, A McDonnell, P Smith 0-1 each. Longford: R Smyth 0-7 (6f) , P McCormack, S McCormack (f), B Farrell 0-1 each
Louth: C Lynch 6; P Rath 6, P Reilly 6, K Carr 6; D Maguire 6, L Dullaghan 6, A Williams 6; T Durkin 7, A McDonnell 8; J Stewart 6, P Smith 7, B Duffy 5; R Moore 5, J McEneaney 6, R Burns 7. Subs: D Byrne for Moore (h-t), C McKeever 6 for Duffy (BC 50), R Holcroft 6 for McEnaeney (60), E O'Connor for A McDonnell (64),
Longford: P Collum 7; P McGee 4, B Gilleran 5, D Brady 6; D McElligott 6, P McCormack 8, C Farrelly 6; D Gallagher 6, J Keegan 6; B O'Farrell 6, J McGivney 5, B McKeon 6; R Smyth 7, L Connerton 6, S McCormack 5. Subs: D Mimnagh 5 for P McGee (24), B Farrell 6 for Keegan (BC 40), B McKeon for Reynolds (54), M Quinn 6 for J McGivney (55), D McGivney 6 for Gallagher (63), L Moran for Farrelly (67),
Ref: N McKenna (Monaghan).