Thursday 19 September 2019

St Columba’s Mullinalaghta become the first Longford team in a Leinster final after routing 12-man Éire Óg

ST COLUMBA’S MULLINALAGHTA 2-15  ÉIRE ÓG 0-3

Mullinalaghta St Columba's players from left Conor Brady, Simon Cadam and Luke Meehan after the AIB Leinster GAA Football Senior Club Championship semi-final match between Mullinalaghta St. Columba's and Eire Og at Glennon Brothers Pearse Park in Longford. Photo by Matt Browne/Sportsfile
Mullinalaghta St Columba's players from left Conor Brady, Simon Cadam and Luke Meehan after the AIB Leinster GAA Football Senior Club Championship semi-final match between Mullinalaghta St. Columba's and Eire Og at Glennon Brothers Pearse Park in Longford. Photo by Matt Browne/Sportsfile

Frank Roche

HISTORY was made in Glennon Brothers Pearse Park where St Columba’s Mullinalaghta became the first ever Longford team to reach an AIB Leinster club SFC decider.

They did so with an emphatic flourish, demolishing Éire Óg of Carlow town by 18 points this afternoon.

Yet that was only half the story, the other being the complete unravelling of discipline by Éire Óg who finished with 12 men after Ross Dunphy (straight red), Christopher Blake (two yellows) and ‘keeper Robert Moore (another ridiculous straight red) received their early marching orders from Wicklow referee Anthony Nolan.

Dunphy was cited for an off-the-ball flashpoint in first half injury-time that left Aidan McElligott on the ground, Nolan brandishing red after a consultation with one of his linesman.

The half ended soon after with Mullinalaghta 0-6 to 0-1 ahead, having weathered an early Éire Óg onslaught that produced very little on the scoreboard.

Even though Darragh O’Brien, the visitors’ best player, landed a brace from play in the third quarter, Mullinalaghta were already starting to ease clear against 14 men before James McGivney rifled home their first goal. It came in the 44th minute after an incisive run by Gary Rogers, Mullinalaghta’s most consistently productive player.

Blake was already on a yellow for a crude rugby tackle when he committed a similar offence and was gone after 47minutes.

Their nightmare afternoon was complete soon after when Aidan McEligott’s backward flick to a high delivery from Jayson Matthews deceived Moore and crept over the line for a second goal on 49 minutes.

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Moore reacted in the worst possible fashion, flooring the goalscorer who had to be taken off injured while the ‘keeper received his inevitable dispatch papers too. 

SCORERS - Mullinalaghta: D McGivney 0-4 (3f), J McGivney, A McElligott 1-0, R Brady 0-3, D McElligott, J Keegan, B Fox 0-2 each, G Rogers, J Matthews 0-1 each. Éire Óg: D O’Brien 0-2, C Blake 0-1.

MULLINALAGHTA: P Rogers; S Cadam, P Fox, C Brady; F Mulligan, S Mulligan, D McElligott; J Keegan, A McElligott; G Rogers, J McGivney, D McGivney; J Matthews, R Brady, B Fox.

Subs: C McElligott for A McElligott (inj 52), M Cunningham for Brady (54), L Meehan for S Mulligan (56), C McElligott for Matthews (59).

ÉIRE ÓG: R Moore; B Kavanagh, F O’Toole, M Fitzgerald; J Lowry, P McElligott, E Ruth; K Chatten, S Gannon; S Rea, J Morrissey, D O’Brien; R Dunphy, M Ware, C Blake.

Subs: M Furey for Morrissey (35), R Mahon for Lowry (38), D Hayden for Rea (40), G McGill for Ware (52).

Subs: A Nolan (Wicklow).

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