Derry rue missed goal chances as Tyrone win

Holders Tyrone will face Cavan in next weekend’s Dr McKenna Cup final

Tyrone 2-13 Derry 1-13

Holders Tyrone will face Cavan in next weekend's Dr McKenna Cup final following their narrow win over a goal-shy Derry side at Healy Park.

Derry created half-a-dozen genuine goal chances, but took just one of them, and paid the price to a more efficient Red Hand side.

Tyrone crafted a superb goal after just 15 seconds, cutting the Derry defence open for Niall McKenna to finish with a bullet to the net.

They moved into a seven-point lead when McKenna, Connor McAliskey and Darren McCurry all pointed.


Derry didn't get their opening score until the 16th minute when Ciarán McGoldrick found the target, but they got on top in the final 10 minutes of the half, with Fergal Doherty and Niall Holly stepping up their game in midfield.

Gerard O'Kane (2), Doherty and Declan Mullan all slotted over points, and they could have had two goals, but Ciarán McGoldrick and Aaron Kerrigan both fired wide when clear.

Tyrone rallied and were denied a second goal when goalkeeper Thomas Mallon saved superbly to keep Conan Grugan’s shot out.

The Red Hands led by 1-6 to 0-5 at the interval, and grabbed their second goal seven minutes into the second half when Peter Harte slotted home a penalty after Mattie Donnelly had been fouled by ’keeper Thomas Mullan.

But Derry battled back, with James Kielt coming off the bench to strike three quality points from distance.

After a host of goal chances, they finally claimed a three- pointer in the 64th minute when Emmet McGuckin flicked home Benny Heron’s delivery to make it a three point game.

Both sides were reduced to 14 men when Derry’s Patsy Bradley and Tyrone’s Donnelly were black-carded, with all 12 subs having been used.

TYRONE: M O'Neill, R McKenna, C Clarke, R McNamee, T McCann, P Harte (1-0, pen), R McNabb, N McKenna (1-1), C Grugan (0-1), K Gallagher, P Hughes, E McKenna (0-1), D McCurry (0-6, 3f), M Donnelly, C McAliskey (0-3). Subs: B Tierney for McNamee (13), C McGinley for McCann, McNamee for McNabb (both half-time), PJ Lavery (0-1) for McNamee (61 mins), R O'Neill for McAliskey (63 mins).
DERRY: T Mallon, O Duffy, D McBride, M McShane, C Kielt, M Craig, K Johnston, F Doherty (0-3), N Holly, G O'Kane (0-2), E McGuckin (1-0), SL McGoldrick, C McGoldrick (0-2), D Mullan (0-1), A Kerrigan. Subs: B Heron (0-1, f) for McShane (half-time), A McAlynn for Craig (43 mins), M Lynch (0-1) for Holly (48 mins), J Kielt (0-3, 1f) for C McGoldrick (49 mins), P Bradley for Doherty (59 mins), C McFaul for O'Kane (64 mins),
Referee: S McLaughlin (Donegal).