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2024 TG4 All-Ireland Finals tickets

TG4 ULSTER SENIOR FOTBALL FINAL

TG4 ULSTER SENIOR FOTBALL FINAL

TYRONE 1-6 MONAGHAN 2-11

Tyrone must regroup for the All Ireland qualifiers after another heartbreaking Ulster final loss at the hands of Monaghan at the weekend. 2-11 to 1-6 the scoreline after an entertaining TG4 Ulster senior decider at Enniskillens Brewster Park.

Former Tyrone manager John McAleer who took Tyrone close to the quickly becoming elusive provincial title against his home county was once again the mastermind behind a Farney eight point victory. Indeed it could have been a worse hammering for Tyrone but for four superb saves from goalkeeper Sinead McVeigh.

Monaghan, boosted by the quality of Ciara McAnespie, Edel Byrne and Niamh Kindlon up front and the Courtneys Fiona and Sharon and impressive Angela Lennon and Grainne McNally in defence deserve the plaudits. They took the game to Tyrone and at times, caused them problems all over the park especially around the middle and in defence and really Tyrone did not have the answers. That said though Michaela O’Neills side did come back from a seven point deficit and sat just a point off the once perennial champions in the second half. Monaghan failed to score for some thirty minutes but while Tyrone huffed and puffed, three wides when the single point separated he sides proved crucial, a fact not lost on the Tyrone boss,

“ We had the chances to go ahead, we just couldn’t get those scores in our best spell, we held them scoreless, pulled it back but those misses….”

Monaghan got off to a flyer, McConnell 0-3 Kindlon 0-2,Mc Anespie and Byrne all got on the score-sheet in the opening twenty minutes and McVeigh was called upon to stop three real Monaghan goal chances. All Tyrone could muster was a Lynette Hughes shot from long range in one of three real attacks before a 21st minute goal from Begley opened their account.

Gormley got rare poccession before off loading to Gemma Begley who slotted home a vital goal, the joy was short-lived tough, within minutes Kindlon cut through yet again, laid the ball to Therese McNally who left McVeigh with no chance, the wide open spaces of Brewster Park really suiting John McAleers side.

Byrne went close but drilled a clear cut chance well wide and that seemed to spur Tyrone to life at last. Neamh Woods went to midfield and Tyrone certainly started to make some ground, Joline Donnelly pointed and Woods delightful pass set Begely up for a 25th minute point. Woods herself slotted over point number three and minutes later Tyrone could have been really back in the tie.

Begley was up ended and referee Gavin Corrigan had no hesitation in awarding a penalty, Begley struck the spot kick well but Linda Martin produced a stunning save, diving low to her right to deny the all Star.

The resultant 45 eventually found its way over the bar from Clodagh Poyntz leaving just three points between the teams at the break.

Monaghan started the second half with a flourish again, McAnespie, a constant threat, nipped in to set up McNally, again McVeigh the last line of defence denied Monaghan. Indeed it was a full thirty minutes before Monaghan troubled the umpires again and that could have proved costly for them admitted manager McAleer,

“The penalty save and our missed chances were turning points, it got Tyrone going and they really pushed us but couldn’t score”

Poyntz and Begley did score though and with 14 minutes to go a point separated the sides. Yet despite creating chances against a very good Monaghan defence, three score able chances, albeit from long range left it as you were before Mc Nally left defenders in her wake again before lashing over an 8th Monaghan point.

That score was the final turning point, turning the tie in their favour once and for all. McAnespies stinging shot was once again saved by McVeigh but she slotted over another point. Edel Byrne finished off a good move with a white flag and substitute Lavinia Connolly was sprung from the bench and ended the scoring with 1-1 in two minutes. McAnespie set up the goal for the sub while Yvonne McConnell eased through the defence sending the Latton player through for the point.

Forwards Ciara McAnespie and Niamh Kindlon, midfielder Amanda Casey and defender Sharon Courtney were all in the running for the player of the match tag, however it was Fiona Courtney who took the honours with a great defencive display.

Tyrone had their chances to be fair but it was an evening to forget for too many players. Sinead McVeigh was certainly the busier of the keepers but it was Monaghans day in the evening sun.

For yrone its back to the drawing board says manager O’Neill,

“Yes its back to the drawing board again, I feel we played well enough but just couldn’t get the scores, their great start was a killer, but yes we pegged them back, we have plenty of positives though, we will look at he Dvd and take it from there”

There’s no doubting Tyrone showed great resilience to claw back after trailing by seven but they were caught out easily at times, outpaced and found the scores hard to come by against a very sound well drilled Monaghan defence. Indeed Monaghan played some stylish football but says captain Niamh Kindlon room for more improvement,

“We did well there alright but we failed to score for over twenty minutes I think, that was certainly not good enough, we have plenty of work to do, we will celebrate this fourth title in eight years return to club football for a couple of weeks before the all Ireland quarter finals.”

For Tyrone it will be a round two qualifier some time in early August, plenty of time to regroup and refocus.

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