Armagh in fine fettle as they get the better of Roscommon

Kieran McGeeney acknowledges that there is still some work to do ahead of championship

Armagh’s Rory Grugan and Brian Stack of Roscommon battle for the ball during their Allianz League encounter. Photo: Philip Magowan/Inpho

Armagh’s Rory Grugan and Brian Stack of Roscommon battle for the ball during their Allianz League encounter. Photo: Philip Magowan/Inpho

 

Armagh 1-17 Roscommon 0-11

Armagh manager Kieran McGeeney certainly had cause to take considerable satisfaction from his team’s handsome victory over Roscommon in Sunday’s Allianz Football League Division Two North shoot-out at the Athletic Grounds.

Not only did the win assure his side of a place at the top table in league terms next year but with the hope that the competition will revert to its usual format, McGeeney believes it will afford his side the opportunity to further its development.

It was a power-packed second-half performance from the orchard county that left Roscommon floundering, a rudderless outfit that had basked in a false dawn having skipped into an early lead before being totally subdued by a tigerish Armagh side that is in just the right mood now for championship fare.

Roscommon’s robust start gave way to a collapse of sorts that allowed Armagh to take control and exert their experience and physicality particularly in the second-half.

While it was a welcome win, manager McGeeney believes there is still work to be done.

“Obviously we are very pleased to be staying in the top bracket but the hope is that the league will now revert to its normal format next year. I think we would really relish that,” declared the Armagh boss.

“We are learning all the time. While there are those out there who would try to make the game convoluted I think it’s important that we concentrate on getting the basic things, the simple things if you like, right.

“We knew going into the game that Roscommon would be tough opponents and now that it is over we have to take the positives from it. But there is still much we have to learn. I thought that maybe we might have got more scores but that did not happen. Still we have to be happy with where we are.”

Having galloped into a 0-5 to 0-1 lead when the Murtagh duo Diarmuid and Ciarán along with Conor Cox were on fire in the opening quarter, Roscommon were reined in particularly after Oisín O’Neill’s 28th minute goal which helped to give the hosts a 1-7 to 0-7 interval lead.

With Jemar Hall, Rían O’Neill, Rory Grugan and skipper Stefan Campbell stepping smartly up to the mark, Armagh left their opponents in their slipstream as they piled on the points with some audacious scores.

Having streaked ahead at 1-12 to 0-9, Armagh strolled majestically through the final quarter in landing the last five points of the game without a response.

Not surprisingly, Roscommon manager Anthony Cunningham was in reflective mood at the end.

“Armagh are always a tough game to play against but we made things hard for ourselves. We now have to discover why we lost our way so massively after that first quarter had given us hope. Once Armagh took control, there was no say back for us,” admitted Cunningham.

Armagh: B Hughes; R Finn, A Forker, G McCabe (0-1); C Mackin, A McKay, C O’Hanlon; N Grimley (0-1), A Murnin (0-2); J Hall (0-3), R O’Neill (0-5, 3f), T Kelly; R Grugan (0-3, 2f), O O’Neill (1-1), S Campbell (0-1).

Subs: C Turbitt for Murnin (41 mins), J Og Burns for Kelly (41), C O’Neill for Hall (48), R Kennedy for Forker (58), B Donaghy for O’Hanlon (65), J Morgan for McKay (67).

Roscommon: C Lavin; D Murray, C Daly, B Stack; R Daly, C Hussey, R Hughes; E Smith, T O’Rourke; N Kilroy, C Murtagh (0-3, 2f), S Killoran; D Murtagh (0-3, 1f), D Smith, C Cox (0-5, 2f).

Subs: N Daly for Hughes, (31), E Nolan for E Smith (h/t), F Lennon for R Daly (h/t), C Devaney for Killoran (44), C Cregg for Kilroy (44), C Lennon for D Murtagh (54), C McKeon for D Smith (55).

Referee: Sean Hurson (Tyrone).

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
GO BACK
Error Image
The account details entered are not currently associated with an Irish Times subscription. Please subscribe to sign in to comment.
Comment Sign In

Forgot password?
The Irish Times Logo
Thank you
You should receive instructions for resetting your password. When you have reset your password, you can Sign In.
The Irish Times Logo
Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.
Screen Name Selection

Hello

Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
Forgot Password
Please enter your email address so we can send you a link to reset your password.

Sign In

Your Comments
We reserve the right to remove any content at any time from this Community, including without limitation if it violates the Community Standards. We ask that you report content that you in good faith believe violates the above rules by clicking the Flag link next to the offending comment or by filling out this form. New comments are only accepted for 3 days from the date of publication.