Derrygonnelly burst out of the traps to see off Clann Éireann

Fermanagh champions were 3-2 to 0-0 up after just 13 minutes

Derrygonnelly 3-11 Clann Éireann 1-11

Derrygonnelly made history at Kingspan Breffni by booking a place in the Ulster Club SFC final for the first time ever.

The Fermanagh champions weren’t flattered by their six point winning margin with a spring-heeled start the scaffold they used to construct their victory.

Everything Derrygonnelly touched in the first quarter turned to gold as Clann Éireann bent and looked distinctly like breaking.


The Fermanagh aces first hit the jackpot in the eighth minute with late call-up Shane McGullion following up Gary McKenna’s blocked shot to palm the ball to the net.

Worse was to follow for the Lurgan men as Conal Jones' expert overhead flick - after he met a long punted free by Ryan Jones - and Shane McGullion's sidefoot finish incredibly made it 3-2 to 0-0 after just 13 minutes.

But the Ernesiders threatened to self-destruct briefly thereafter when key midfielder Stephen McGullion picked up a second yellow card on the half-hour mark.

Clann Éireann laboured to make their extra man count though, lacking both conviction in their shooting and quality in terms of their decision making.

The Orchard County champions did manage to use their numerical supremacy to generate more possession on the restart but Conal Jones’ inspirational point after 36 minutes gave the long-time leaders’ a 10-point cushioned lead.

To their credit, Clann Éireann refused to give up the ghost though and after evading three tackles, Conor McConville goaled brilliantly from 22 metres to cut Derrygonnelly’s lead to a more manageable 3-8 to 1-7 at the final water break.

The chasing team proceeded to kick too many wides for their own good and the Armagh men smelled blood with Conor Turbitt's brace of frees setting the scene for a barnstorming final 10 minutes.

As Derrygonnelly backpeddled furiously, a goal beckoned for their opponents but Jack Conlon’s effort raced over, instead of under, the bar in the 56th minute.

And less than 90 seconds later the red carding of Conlon’s colleague Sean McCarthy signalled the sounding of the last post for the underdogs.

Derrygonnelly: J McGurn; A Jones, T Daly, M Jones; O Smyth, D Cassidy, L Jones; Stephen McGullion (0-1), R Jones; E McHugh, G Jones (0-3, 3f), L Jones; Shane McGullion (2-0), C Jones (1-5, 1f), G McKenna (0-2, 1f). Subs: R McGovern for L Jones (43); C Burns for L Jones (48); A McKenna for Shane McGullion (57); G McGovern for E McHugh (62); N Maguire for D Cassidy (65).

Clann Éireann: E Mulholland; C O'Carroll, B McCambridge, D Leathem; S McCarthy, S Heffron, A Kelly; C Bell, T Kelly; D Magee (0-1), R Henderson, C McConville (1-1); D McCarthy (0-1), C Turbitt (0-6, 6f), A McConville. Subs: J Conlon (0-1) for C O'Carroll (h/t); R McDonald for A McConville (h/t); P McKenna (0-1) for C Bell (34); O Downey for A Kelly (65).

Referee: S Laverty (Antrim)