Donegal edge out Armagh

Donegal 1-12 Armagh 1-11
Published Saturday, 09 August 2014
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Ulster champions Donegal are through to the All-Ireland semi-finals after edging out provincial rivals Armagh by 1-12 to 1-11 in an absorbing encounter at Croke Park on Saturday.

Donegal edge out Armagh
Donegal edged the result and are in the semi-finals. (© Presseye)

In what was a low-scoring but entertaining first half Donegal took the lead through a Michael Murphy free, and shortly afterwards tensions spilled over into a fracas involving players and management on both sides.

While there was plenty of pushing and jostling between the sides, ultimately the incident was not deemed to be serious by match referee Joe McQuillan, although Aaron Findon was shown a yellow card for his part in the confrontation.

Following that incident the crowd at Headquarters were treated to an enthralling half of football, with the Kernon brothers both scoring points to edge Armagh into the lead.

Stefan Forker's effort put two between the sides before Odhran Mac Niallais netted to put the Ulster champions back in front.

The midfielder received a pass from Ryan McHugh and evaded the attentions of an Armagh defender before putting the ball past Phillip McEvoy at his near post.

The Orchard County got their noses in front again with Andy Mallon's point, but Donegal finished the half strongly and scores from Murphy, Neil McGee and Colm McFadden edged Jim McGuinness' side to a 1-5 to 0-6 half time lead.

Donegal extended their lead early in the second half, but were never more than three points ahead as Armagh continued to apply pressure, and they got their reward when Stefan Campbell found the net in somewhat fortuitous fashion.

The Clan na Gael man palmed the ball goalwards only to see his effort rebound off the post before striking Donegal stopper Paul Durkan on the leg and trickle over the line.

That score put Armagh ahead by a single point heading into the closing stages but Donegal fought back once again, with quickfire scores from Murphy and Patrick McBrearty edging the ulster Champions ahead by a single score.

Armagh had two chances to level in the closing stages, but two long-range frees from Tony Kernan failed to find the mark as Donegal held on for the victory which takes them into the last four.

Monaghan exited the All-Ireland Championship at the quarter-final stage after suffering a 2-22 to 0-11 defeat to Dublin at Croke Park.

The Farneymen were simply outclassed by the defending champions, who pulled away from the Ulster side midway through the first half after an even first ten minutes.

Two goals inside three first half minutes from Bernard Brogan and Diarmuid Connolly did the initial damage, with Dublin racing to a 2-8 to 0-5 half time lead.

Conor McManus was Monaghan's standout performer on what was a day to forget for boss Malachy O'Rourke, as he saw his side outplayed all over the park.

Dublin will now face Ulster champions Donegal in the semi-finals on Sunday 31 August.

© UTV News
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