A MUCH-CHANGED DONEGAL and Mayo couldn’t be separated in the final of the North-West Under-21 Cup at the Sligo Centre of Excellence this afternoon.
Donegal 1-9 Mayo 1-9 (after extra-time)
At the end of extra-time, Mayo wanted to play a further five-minute period of additional time but Donegal did not.
Therefore, it was thought that this one might be sorted out on the board room, but it looks as though it will be replayed.
Sense prevailed with no further play happening this evening. Replay date & time TBC. #mayogaa
— Mayo GAA (@MayoGAA) January 23, 2016
Manager Declan Bonner was forced into a number of alterations as Kilcar were involved in the Ulster Under-21 Tournament in Antrim and Donegal seniors had a get-together.
However, Bonner’s side were still very competitive, in a contest in which there was plenty of bite with Donegal coming from four points down in the last minute to force extra-time at 1-7 apiece.
It seemed as though Mayo were set for victory, only for Hugh ‘Yank’ Boyle to lob goalkeeper Matthew Flanaghan after another Naomh Muire player, Jack O’Brien, had nipped possession. Then, John Campbell tied up the scores from a free to force extra-time.
The free-taking abilities of Liam Irwin, who scored five points in normal time, had kept Donegal at arm’s length.
With 10 minutes left Donegal were down to 14 men when Eamonn McGrath was sent off for picking up two yellows – a punishment that Mayo centre-back James Kelly would also receive after a foul too many in the last minute.
In extra-time, Donegal were 1-9 to 1-7 in front at the end of the first period following points from Campbell and a great Daniel Gallagher score, only for Mayo to claw back level with Brian Reape and Mickey Murray scoring to tie it again.
And that’s how it ended. Donegal had almost won a game they chased for long periods.
At half-time Donegal trailed 1-3 to 0-4 with the only goal coming from a well-worked Mayo move on 12 minutes. The ball was worked down the right and Irwin found Barry Duffy with a pass and he shot past Naomh Columba’s Paddy Byrne.
That made the score 1-1 to 0-0, as Irwin – who scored a fantastic goal seven days beforehand in Letterkenny as Donegal won 1-9 to 1-8 – had opened the scoring. In fact, it was Duffy’s fumble in that game that cost Mayo a goal after Stephen McBrearty’s free but the wing-back certainly made up for that mistake.
Donegal, though, playing against an awkward wind which made life difficult for both sides on a slippery pitch, got going through three frees – two from Calum Gallagher and one from Caolan McGonagle, while Conor O’Donnell was also on the mark. Brian Reape and Duffy also added a point towards the end of the first half.
Donegal: Paddy Byrne; Jack Quinn, Jack O’Brien, Danny Monagle; Eamonn McGrath, Conor Morrison, Niall Friel; Leo McHugh, Caolan McGonagle (0-1); Christian Bonner, Mark Coyle, Conor O’Donnell (0-1); Calum Gallagher (0-2, 2f), Adam Neely, John Campbell (0-3, 3f). Subs: Daniel Gallagher (0-1), Hugh ‘Yank’ Boyle (1-1) and Michael Langan for Neely, Bonner and C Gallagher (39), Niall Harley for McHugh (42), Darren Curran for Friel (47), Niall Gavigan for Coyle (56), Jack Scalley (introduced after McGrath’s sending off for extra-time), Morrison, Coyle and Friel for Monagle, Campbell and Curran (75)
Mayo: Matthew Flanaghan, David Kenny, Seamus Cunniffe, Ciaran Harrison; Barry Duffy (1-1), James Kelly, Shehroz Akram; Val Roughneen, Padraig Pendergast; Fergal Boland, Matthew Ruane; James Lyons, Brian Reape (0-2, 1f), Liam Irwin (0-5, 4f). Subs: Mickey Murray (0-1) for Prendergast (43), Eoghan O’Donoghue for Kenny (53), Cathal Barrett for Roughneen (56). TJ Byrne (introduced after Kelly’s sending off for extra-time).
Referee: Barry Judge (Sligo).Tags: