Andrew Murnin’s goal decisive as Armagh take Division Three title

Séamus Quigley kept Fermanagh in contention with penalties

Fermanagh’s Barry Mulrone is tackled by Brendan Donaghy of Armagh during the Allianz Football League Division Three final at  Croke Park. Photograph: Laszlo Geczo/Inpho

Fermanagh’s Barry Mulrone is tackled by Brendan Donaghy of Armagh during the Allianz Football League Division Three final at Croke Park. Photograph: Laszlo Geczo/Inpho

 

Armagh 1-16 Fermanagh 0-17

A 54th-minute goal from Andrew Murnin was the crucial score as Armagh confirmed their advancement to the second tier of the Allianz Football League as Division Three champions.

Murnin was exceptional throughout but he won’t ever get an easier score, scooping to an empty net from about two metres, after Gregory McCabe contested Ben Crealey’s delivery with Fermanagh goalkeeper Patrick Cadden.

Fermanagh were heavily reliant on the free-taking of Séamus Quigley for scores, but such was the indiscipline of the Armagh defence at times, there were plenty of opportunities and he finished with nine points, all from set kicks.

Points from Aidan Forker, Murnin and Niall Grimley helped Armagh establish an early two-point lead but with Quigley, Declan McCusker and Conal Jones finding the target at the other end, Fermanagh were able to move ahead.

It was nip and tuck from there to the break and they went in level on 0-8 apiece.

Lively substitute Ryan McShane, Murnin and Patrick Burns helped Kieran McGeeney’s Orchard men move three clear and though Quigley reduced that by one, it looked curtains when Murnin raised the green flag.

Fermanagh have plenty of steel though and Ryan and Conall Jones kept them in touch, only for Armagh to make sure with points from McShane and Grimley.

Rory Gallagher’s crew made it interesting in the four minutes of injury time, kicking the last three points through Tomás Corrigan, Conall Jones and Barry Mulrone but Armagh held out.

Armagh: B Hughes, P Burns (0-2), A McKay, C Mackin, N Rowland (0-1), B Donaghy, G McCabe (0-1), S Sheridan, C Vernon, B Crealey (0-1), A Forker (0-2), N Grimley (0-4, 3f), R Grugan, A Murnin (1-3), E Rafferty. Subs: R McShane (0-2), for Vernon (33 mins), G McParland for Rafferty (47), K Dyas for Rowland (60), O Mac Íomhar for Grugan (70), R Owens for Mackin (70+2)

Fermanagh: P Cadden, M Jones, C Cullen, E McHugh, B Mulrone (0-1), D McCusker (0-1), J McMahon, E Donnelly, R Jones (0-2), T Clarke, C McGee, A Breen, Seán Quigley, C Jones (0-3), Séamus Quigley (0-9, 9f). Subs: C Corrigan for Seán Quigley (B-C 4 mins), K Connor for McHugh (ht), R Corrigan for McGee (41), T Corrigan (0-1) for Clarke (54), E Maguire for McMahon (64)

Referee: J Molloy (Galway)

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