HomeFootballEfficient Kerry end Derry’s run to book All-Ireland SFC semi-final showdown with...

Efficient Kerry end Derry’s run to book All-Ireland SFC semi-final showdown with Armagh

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The Kingdom will now face Armagh in the last four at the same venue on the weekend of July 13/14.

Level at half-time, Kerry pulled away down the home stretch to edge out the league champions and deny Mickey Harte another famous win against the Kingdom.

They were almost brought to the wire, however. On 59 minutes, just a point separated the teams after Brendan Rogers boomed over his second point of the day.

However, Kerry managed the game well from there, engineering a point through Tony Brosnan before a pair of Sean O’Shea frees put four between the sides.

Odhrán Lynch wandered forward for a Derry point to cut the margin to a goal.

However, there was to be no late drama. First subs Adrian Spillane and Dylan Geaney combined nicely for a point for the latter before Gavin White sealed the win with almost the last action of the day

The sides were level four times in the first-half. Shane McGuigan was Derry’s star turn. After his form wobbled – along with the rest of his team – earlier in this championship, he looked back to his best here with four first half points, three from play as Jason Foley struggled.

McGuigan was involved in a very different way on 13 minutes. Paul Murphy’s fisted point attempt came back off the post and fell to Gavin White who looked certain to hit the net before McGuigan’s diving block.

Tadhg Morley picked up the rebound but this time Lachlann Murray charged down his effort.

David Clifford had kicked Kerry’s first point and added a score after a brilliant mark but he was also on defensive detail, having flicked the ball out for ‘45, fearful of the lurking Chrissy McKaigue at the back post.

Paul Geaney and McGuigan kicked the last two points of the half to ensure the sides went in level at the break (0-6 each).

Coming into the game, one side had lost three times in the championship while the other boasted an unblemished record. At the interval, it wasn’t easy to tell which team was which.

However, Kerry gradually eased away from Derry with Sean O’Shea growing into the game.

They move on to an All-Ireland semi final clash with Kieran McGeeney’s Armagh. Derry’s rollercoaster year, however, is over.

Scorers – Kerry: D Clifford (1m 1f), S O’Shea (2f) 0-3 each, T Brosnan 0-2, B O Beaglaoich, P Geaney, K Spillane, D Geaney, D O’Connor, J O’Connor, G White 0-1 each. Derry: S McGuigan 0-5 (2f), B Rogers 0-2, C Glass, P Cassidy, O Lynch 0-1 each.

Kerry: S Ryan; T O’Sullivan, J Foley, T Morley; B O Beaglaoich, G White, C McCluskey; D O’Connor, J O’Connor; T Brosnan, P Clifford, D Moynihan; D Clifford, S O’Shea, P Geaney Subs: C Burke for Moynihan (53), K Spillane for Geaney (57), D Geaney for Brosnan (62), A Spillane for J O’Connor (68), M Breen for O Beaglaioch (73).

Derry: O Lynch; C McCluskey, E McEvoy, C McKaigue; D Baker, C Doherty, G McKinless; C Glass, B Rogers; E Doherty, C McFaul, P Cassidy; E Mulholland, S McGuigan, L Murray. Subs: N Toner for Mulholland (39), N Loughlin for Murray (59), E Bradley for McFaul, C Murphy for Cassidy (both 65).

Referee: D Coldrick (Meath)

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