The Dubs have a comfortable win over Laois

November 8, 2018

Dublin 1-16 Laois 0-11
Dublin will face Kildare in the Leinster SFC semi-finals after registering an eight-point win over Laois. Laois stayed in contention mainly through goalkeeper Eoin Culliton, who pulled off many fine saves over the 70 minutes.Dublin led by 1-07 to 0-05 at half-time, with Diarmuid Connolly netting a 22nd minute goal.Laois cut the deficit to two points just after the restart, but Dublin, helped by man-of-the-match Alan Brogan, pulled away for a workmanlike victory.41,786 spectators turned up at Croke Park for today’s provincial double header, with the winners advancing to a June 26 semi-final.

Dublin made the perfect start when their skipper Bryan Cullen pointed after just 25 seconds. Pat Gilroy’s men swiftly moved into a 0-04 to 0-00 lead by the 10th minute.Laois eventually opened their account after 17 minutes courtesy of a Ross Munnelly score. He doubled his tally and a Daithi Carroll effort ensured a 0-04 to 0-03 scoreline in the 20th minute.

Bernard Brogan converted Dublin’s first point in seven minutes before the Metropolitans’ attack delivered a sucker punch from the ensuing kickout. A short kickout fell to Kevin McMenamon who picked out Alan Brogan . He created an opening for Connolly in the centre, and the St. Vincent’s clubman beat Culliton with a low, driven shot.Dublin’s lead at the break could have been greater were it not for a number of superb saves from Laois keeper, Eoin Culliton and a late brace of points from defender Padraig McMahon.

Laois manager Justin McNulty opted to introduce Donal Kingston for Billy Sheehan at the start of the second half, and the O’Moore men resumed where they had left off. Begley, Carroll and Munnelly reeled off points to leave just two between the sides, four minutes into the second period.The Dubs needed to respond and they did so in fine fashion, putting together a run of five unanswered points between the 41st and 51st minutes.

Central to this purple patch was the display of Michael Dara Macauley in the midfield sector. Bernard Brogan, Cluxton, Connolly (0-02) and Alan Brogan were the scorers as Dublin took a 1-12 to 0-08 advantage with just under 20 minutes remaining.

Cahir Healy performed well for Laois with some brilliant blocks, but the loss of Daithi Carroll through injury at the opposite end was a major blow to Laois chances of mounting a comeback.

A point each from the Brogan brothers gave Dublin a 1-14 to 0-08 lead with 10 minutes remaining, and Laois had leaked seven unanswered scores.They eventually broke a 22-minute spell without a score when substitute Gary Kavanagh slotted over a point and repeated the feat just moments later.Dublin though had one eye on a semi-final date with Kildare and could afford to take off key men Bernard Brogan, Macauley and Cullen in the closing stages.

Scorers Dublin ;D Connolly 1-3; B Brogan 0-5 (1f);S Cluxton 0-3;(3 45s), B Cullen 0-1;A Brogan 0-2;T Quinn 0-1 (1f);D Lally 0-1.
Scorers Laois ;R Munnelly 0-04 (2f); Daithí Carroll 0-2 ; P McMahon 0-2 ; C Begley 0-1 ; G Kavanagh 0-2.

DUBLIN: S Cluxton ; P McMahon, R O’Carroll, M Fitzsimons; J McCarthy, G Brennan, K Nolan; MD Macauley, B Cahill; P Flynn, K McManamon, B Cullen ; A Brogan , D Connolly , B Brogan .
Subs used: P Casey for Nolan (14-18 mins, blood sub), D Bastick for Cahill (43), E O’Gara for McManamon (47), T Quinn for B Brogan (63), R McConnell for Macauley (66), D Lally for Cullen (69)

LAOIS: E Culliton; C Healy, P McMahon , M Timmons; D Strong, S Julian, P O’Leary; K Meaney, B Quigley; D Carroll , C Begley , N Donoher; R Munnelly , B Sheehan, J O’Loughlin.

Subs used: D Kingston for Sheehan (half-time), K Lillis for O’Loughlin (52 mins), G Kavanagh (0-02) for Carroll (54), C Boyle for Timmons (61).

Referee: Joe McQuillan (Cavan)