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Derrygonnelly Into Semi Final

Tuesday 14.11.2017
Team Talk Mag
Championship Football


Derrygonnelly Harps 0-8 Ghaoth Gaobhair 0-4

Derrygonnelly became the first Fermanagh team in many years to progress to the semi-finals of the Paul McGirr U16 Club Champions Tournament defeating Donegal champions Ghaoth Daobhair with a tremendous display of defensive grit and determination on Saturday afternoon.


It was not a game for the purists with both teams setting up in defensive formations but the closeness of the contest and physicality of the exchanges kept the supporters of both sides on tenterhooks until the final whistle. Lining out without star forward Michael Glynn who was having professional soccer trials in England, the Fermanagh champions went into the game as huge underdogs but their performance throughout the sixty minutes meant they were totally deserving of their victory.


In a low scoring first half, Derrygonnelly were first out of the blocks when a rasping drive from midfielder Rian McGovern was tipped over the bar by Daithi MacRoibeard, before suffering an early injury blow losing Conor McGovern in the opening minutes. Two points from Cathal MacGiolla Easpaig and Stiofan MacPhaidin and one in reply from substitute Eoin Magee left the sides level after 20 minutes, but it was clear at this early stage that scores were going to be at a premium. Raiding full back Leigh Greene, who was having a fine game, put Derrygonnelly ahead before a pointed MacGiolla Easpaig free left the teams level at half time.


Anthony Greene’s half time team talk certainly reaped dividends for Derrygonnelly as their defence, protected by superb man of the match Dara Burke in a sweeping role, restricted their opponents to just one further score in the second half as they tackled like demons and put their bodies on the line with last ditch blocks in a display of defensive strength that their opponents were unable to overcome. Only the skilful Stiofan MacPhaidin posed any threat for Ghaoth Daobhair, his early second half score being their only one registered on the scoreboard. Two fines scores from Rian McGovern gave Derrygonnelly a lead they were never to relinquish as they stepped up the physical stakes.


A superb score from Gareth McGovern following a sixty yard run extended their advantage and another from Cian Corrigan left three in it as time ebbed away. Derrygonnelly absorbed a lot heavy pressure as Ghaoth Dobhair went in search of an equalising goal before they broke away in the final minutes for Jonathan Duffy to land the insurance score much to the delight of their large enthusiastic support. Derrygonnelly progress to the semi-final where they will face the might of Crossmaglen Rangers in what should be an absorbing encounter.


Derrygonnelly – L Skuce, R Campbell, L Greene (0-1), B Curry, A Jones, R McHugh, N Maguire, G McGovern (0-1), R McGovern (0-3 2f), D Burke, C Gallagher, C Corrigan (0-1), C McGovern, B Foy (0-1), R McGovern Subs – E Magee (01) for C McGovern, R Grannell (0-1) for C Gallagher


Ghaoth Daobhair – D MacRoibeard, M O’Dochartaigh, R O’Tuairc, A Breatnach, E De Burca, R O’Gallachoir, D MacGiolla Bhride, D O’Duibhir, F MacGiolla Chomhaill, C McAntee, S MacPhaidin (0-2), L O’Deagha, C MacGiolla Easpaig (0-2 2f), K O’Dubhchain, L MacPhaidin. Subs – S N MacPhidin for E De Burca, A O’Griofa for K O’Dubhchain, E O’Gallachoir for C McAntee


Referee – Micky McCann


picture courtesy of Martin McGlone




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