Bernard Brogan returns as Dublin run riot in dead-rubber
Roscommon no match for Dublin’s fringe players as six goals and 40 points scored
Dublin’s Bernard Brogan makes his return from injury. Photograph: Gary Carr/Inpho
Dublin 4-24 Roscommon 2-16
Dublin dominated their dead-rubber All-Ireland SFC Super 8s outing against Roscommon at Croke Park, recording a facile 14-point win.
Goals from Paul Flynn and Michael Darragh MacAuley helped the All-Ireland champions to an 11-point half-time lead before Eoghan O’Gara raised two green flags after the break.
Notably, the match marked the return of Bernard Brogan from injury in a brief blood-sub cameo in the second half.
Having already booked their place in a ninth successive All-Ireland semi-final against Galway next weekend, the champions were priced at an unbackable 1/66 to see off a Roscommon side with nothing but pride to play for.
While the Rossies did not exactly lay down, they never posed any problems for Jim Gavin’s four-in-a-row chasing outfit while the visitors’ first-half tally of eight wides further harmed their chances of putting up a fight.
With manager Kevin McStay serving a 12-week touchline ban, selectors Ger Dowd and Liam McHale were on the sideline with five changes made from their loss to Donegal.
Gavin’s starting team did not resemble the pre-match 15 named in advance of the game, with John Small, Jack McCaffrey and Colm Basquel were all introduced just before throw-in. Of the new introductions that did not start against Tyrone last time out, Cormac Costello, Flynn, MacAuely and Eoghan O’Gara made a big impact.
Costello delivered a livewire first-half display, kicking four points inside the opening quarter before Flynn blasted to the net from just inside the ‘D’. O’Gara provided the pass to register Dublin’s first goal on 21 minutes, 1-7 to 0-4. There were plenty more to come though.
The Murtaghs, Diarmuid and Ciaráin, attempted to keep Roscommon in the game but by that stage they had already recorded five wides.
O’Gara, in a typically bullish display, bookended Flynn’s goal with a brace of points before a patient Flynn turned provider for the breaking MacAuley to fire home Dublin’s second goal on 31 minutes.
The Dubs led by 2-12 to 0-7 at half-time, but they could have raised a handful of first-half green flags as O’Gara - in the opening minute - Flynn and Costello all spurned decent opportunities.
A deflected goal from substitute Gary Patterson, who was teed up by Enda Smith, seconds after the resumption showed that the Rossies were still interested in having some say.
However, Ciarán Lennon’s failure to convert a second goal soon afterwards - blasting his shot straight at Stephen Cluxton - after doing well to win possession upset the Rossies’ momentum.
O’Gara’s brace added more gloss to the scoreboard for Dublin, while a 53rd-minute goal from substitute Donie Smith was the highlight of Roscommon’s consolation scores.
Dublin: S Cluxton; P McMahon (0-1), D Daly, M Fitzsimonsl E Lowndes, J Small (0-1), J McCaffrey; C O’Sullivan, MD Macauley (1-0); P Flynn (1-3), K McManamon (0-3, 2f), C Basquel; C Costello 0-9 (0-1 ‘45, 0-2 frees), E O’Gara (2-2), P Andrews (0-1).
Subs: C Mulally for C O’Sullivan ht, J McCarthy for J McCaffrey ht, P Small (0-1) for C Costello 44, M Schutte (0-1) for J Small 44, C McHugh (0-2) for E O’Gara 53, A McGowan for D Daly 60, B Brogan for M Schutte 62-66(blood),
Roscommon: J Featherstone; D Murray, P Domican, N McInerney; J McManus, D Petit, R Timothy; T O’Rourke, E Smith; N Kilroy (0-1), C Murtagh (0-1 free), C Devaney (0-1); D Murtagh (0-6, 0-2f), B Stack, C Lennon (0-2).
Subs: G Patterson (1-0) for R Timothy ht, P Kelly (0-2) for N Kilroy ht, I Kilbride for P Domican 49, D Smith (1-3, 0-1 ‘45) for B Stack 49, C Cregg for C Murtagh 56, S McDermott for J McManus 66.
Referee: Cormac Reilly (Meath).