CLG Mhuineacháin - Official Monaghan GAA Website

Previews (March 8-9)

March 8th, 2014

Allianz National Football League Division Two

Monaghan v Louth, Sunday, 2.30, Clones


Monaghan will attempt to bounce back from last Sunday’s loss to Donegal when they host Louth in round four of the NFL.

That result, following a draw with Down and an easy win over Meath, leaves Monaghan in fourth place, while Louth are second-bottom after drawing with Armagh and losing to Laois and Down. Monaghan ran out convincing winners when they last met Louth in the league two years ago.

Malachy O’Rourke has made two changes to the Monaghan team from last Sunday, with Dessie Mone and Pádraig Donaghy coming in for Conor Boyle and Thomas Kerr. Conor McManus and Jack McCarron will shoulder most of the scoring burden, while Kieran Hughes will support Paul Finlay and Gavin Doogan at midfield and Drew Wylie and Colin Walshe will anchor the defence.

Louth manager Aidan O’Rourke has selected a team with three changes from the heavy defeat against Down, with Pádraig Rath, Derek Crilly and Eoin O’Connor replacing Gerard Hoey, Paddy Reilly and Darren Clarke. The Wee County will need Paddy Keenan, Darren Clarke, Andy McDonnell, Derek Byrne, Dessie Finnegan and Gerard Hoey on form.


Monaghan: Rory Beggan; Ryan Wylie, Drew Wylie, Fintan Kelly; Colin Walshe, Dessie Mone, Pádraic Keenan; Gavin Doogan, Paul Finlay; Kieran Hughes, Christopher McGuinness, Pádraig Donaghy; Dermot Malone, Jack McCarron, Conor McManus (Capt.).

Subs: Gerard McCaffrey, Kieran Duffy, Conor Boyle, Karl O’Connell, Conor Galligan, Vincent Corey, Owen Lennon, Martin McElroy, Shane Carey, Dick Clerkin, Thomas Kerr.


Louth: Neil Gallagher; Pádraig Rath, Dessie Finnegan, Keith McLoughlin; John O’Brien, Derek Crilly, Liam Shevlin; Paddy Keenan, Bevan Duffy; Adrian Reid, Colm Judge, Declan Byrne; Andy McDonnell, Eoin O’Connor, Derek Maguire.


Allianz National Hurling League Division 3A

Monaghan v Louth, Sunday, 12.00, Aughnamullen * Note change of venue


Elsewhere on Sunday, Monaghan’s hurlers will be looking to build on their impressive win last time out when they also take on Louth in Aughnamullen.

Monaghan recovered from an opening-round loss to Longford to win in Roscommon and they will be positive that they can back that up against Louth, who fell to their second consecutive defeat in their rescheduled game against Fermanagh last Sunday. Monaghan have a strong spine to the team in the likes of Peter and Mark Treanor, Éanna Mac Suibhne, Trevor Hilliard and Seán Leonard and with free-taker Hugh Byrne having hit 1-16 in the first two games. Louth have Diarmuid Murphy in fine scoring form, with 3-15 to his name already, but they have been without established campaigners like Wesley Morrissey, David Dunne, Shane Fennell and Brian Corcoran to date.


Ladies National Football League Division One

Monaghan v Kerry, Sunday, 1.00, Inniskeen


Monaghan’s ladies will seek to stretch their unbeaten run to five games when they host Kerry on Sunday.

Wins over Laois and defending champions Cork got Monaghan up and running in 2014 and they followed up an entertaining draw with Dublin by crushing Tyrone last Sunday to stay joint-top of the table. Kerry beat Tyrone in their opener and although they then lost to Dublin, the Munster side picked up a morale-boosting win against Cork last time out to remain in a share of third place with a game in hand on Mayo and Cork.

The likes of Cathriona McConnell, Sharon Courtney, Ciara and Aoife McAnespie, Therese and Gráinne McNally and Caoimhe Mohan have been starring for Monaghan so far. Louise Ní Muircheartaigh, Patrice Dennehy, Sarah Houlihan, Louise Galvin and Geraldine Crowley are key players for Kerry. A tougher test than last week awaits for Monaghan, but it’s one that John Morrison’s side will be up for.


Ulster Minor Hurling League Division Two

Monaghan v Louth, Saturday, 12.00, Inniskeen


Monaghan begin their Ulster MHL campaign with a local derby against Louth at Páirc Grattan on Saturday.

Monaghan reached three finals last year – losing to Donegal in the league and beating Cavan in the Ulster shield, before coming out second-best against Mayo in the All-Ireland ‘C’ decider. The last few years have seen Monaghan make good progress under Arthur Hughes and Alan Ryan and they will hope to continue that in 2014. The likes of Tiarnán Bramley, Ronan Curran, Ciarán McQuaid and Killian Lavelle return from last year’s Monaghan team and are set to lead the way on Saturday.


Bank of Ireland Ulster Club Under-21 Football Championship Final

Truagh v Clonoe, Saturday, 2pm, Creggan


Truagh will attempt to become the first Monaghan club to win the Ulster Under-21 title when they take on Clonoe from Tyrone in the final on Saturday.

The competition for county Under-21 champions, run by Antrim club Creggan Kickhams, has been won by Down sides in three of the four years to date, with Tyrone’s Omagh the only exception in 2011.

Truagh, who cruised to victory against Scotstown in the Monaghan Under-21 final, have gone on to defeat Cullyhanna of Armagh and Portglenone from Antrim to reach another decider. Clonoe, who had a single point to spare in the Tyrone final against Pomeroy, have come through a tough side of the Ulster draw, battling past Donegal’s Kilcar and Warrenpoint (Down).

Truagh are chasing a sixth adult title since last July in the wake of county Under-21 and reserve leagues and Monaghan, Ulster and All-Ireland intermediate championships. The north-Monaghan men can call on senior players like Daniel, Paudie, Christopher and Seán McKenna, Adam Treanor, John McCarron, Niall Rooney and Christopher McAnenly, as well as Ulster MFC winner Shane Treanor. Mark Counihan’s side will be hoping Paudie McKenna can return after missing the semi-final. Truagh forward Christopher McKenna needs just two points to overtake Warrenpoint’s Donagh McAleenan as the tournament’s top scorer.

Clonoe, who have former Derry manager Damian Cassidy in charge, also have a team full of players with county and senior club experience, a handful of whom featured in the O’Rahillys’ SFC success last October. Danny McNulty has been struggling with injury, but could be ready to come back after coming on as a sub against Warrenpoint, and would be a huge addition to a team also including the talents of Dwayne and Rhys Quinn, Declan McClure, Ciarán O’Neill and Conor Hughes. Saturday’s game represents a step-up in quality of opposition for Truagh in a game likely to go down to the wire.



There is a busy schedule of games in the Platinum Tanks Reserve Football Leagues over the weekend. Division 1A starts with Monaghan Harps v Clontibret on Saturday, while defending champions Scotstown and newly-promoted Truagh host Magheracloone and Latton respectively on Sunday. Emyvale, Tyholland and Ballybay have home games against Cremartin, Drumhowan and Castleblayney in Division 1B on Sunday, while the Division Two fixtures are Inniskeen v Carrickmacross (Thursday), Éire Óg v Rockcorry and Corduff v Donaghmoyne (Saturday) and Oram v Aughnamullen and Doohamlet v Seán McDermotts (Sunday). Aghabog host Clones in Division Three on Sunday.


There is Juvenile action begins this weekend with games in the Gerry’s Prepared Veg. Under-14 Football League.


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