MONAGHAN QUALIFY FOR DR MCKENNA CUP DECIDER

25 January 2013 No Comments by The Northern Standard

Monaghan 1-12
Down 0-13

BY JOHN GRAHAM
MONAGHAN pulled this game out of the fire with three unanswered points between the 34th and 37th minutes to book their place in the final of the Dr McKenna Cup for the first time since 2003.
By that stage Monaghan could have been well behind such was the dominance of Down and the fractured nature of Monaghan’s display but to their credit they stuck to the task and it eventually came right.
Played in difficult conditions this was a game where there was never very much between the sides but it was a match too where Monaghan contrived to cause themselves numerous problems by being turned over too often and too easily, players taking the wrong option, passes going astray and some poor shooting that left Down always marginally in control yet unable to put any real daylight between themselves and a Monaghan team that struggled to find their rhythm.
The sides were level 8 times during the game, three times in the first half and went in level at half-time, Monaghan 1-5 to Down’s 0-8, Conor McManus with a peach of a goal in the 27th minute.
Nine minutes into the second half Down were reduced to 14 players with the second yellow card dismissal of Keith Quinn and they might well have been reduced further entering the final 10 minutes following a blatant strike by Kevin McKernan on Neil McAdam but despite the referee consulting with the umpires and a linesman no one apparently saw anything.
Monaghan too finished the game with 14 players following …

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