Kildare edge closer to promotion with win in Tipperary

Cian O’Neill’s side run out 11-point winners in Clonmel

Niall Kelly scored one of Kildare’s goals in the Allianz League Division 3 victory over Tipperary in Clonmel. Photograph:  Donall Farmer/Inpho

Niall Kelly scored one of Kildare’s goals in the Allianz League Division 3 victory over Tipperary in Clonmel. Photograph: Donall Farmer/Inpho

 

Tipperary 1-5 Kildare 2-13

Cian O’Neill’s Kildare all but assured themselves of promotion from Division 3 of the Allianz Football League at Clonmel on Saturday afternoon.

The Lilywhites, backed by a large travelling contingent, scored an 11-point victory over hosts Tipperary.

Kildare are four points clear of the chasing pack ahead of next weekend’s final group game with Clare.

Barring a mathematical disaster, they will be playing Division 2 football in 2017 but Tipp will look back on goal chances missed from this encounter, particularly in the first half.

Philip Austin screwed a shot wide in the first minute and Alan Campbell had an effort well saved by Mark Donnellan later in the half.

Kildare, however, had this one wrapped up by half-time, as they led by 1-7 to 0-1.

Niall Kelly’s fortuitous goal in the 17th minute gave Kildare real daylight, as his low, angled delivery aimed for the inside men went all the way to the net.

Kildare were 1-6 to 0-0 clear before Kevin Fahey registered Tipp’s first score of the game in the 26th minute, but the visitors were nine points clear at the interval.

As conditions deteriorated in the second half, Kildare kept Tipp at arm’s length and struck for a second goal through Flynn with 12 minutes left.

Tipp responded with Fahey steaming forward for a goal within a minute to add to his first half point but the Premier County’s promotion hopes are now out of their own hands.

But Flynn limped off late on with a hamstring injury sustained while shooting his second point, and that will come as a major concern to manager O’Neill with the championship just eight weeks away.

Tipp will look to regroup ahead of next weekend’s final pool fixture away to Sligo but their chances of making the jump to Division 2 now appear remote following a second successive defeat.

TIPPERARY: E Comerford; C O’Shaughnessy, A Campbell, C McDonald; J Feehan, R Kiely, K Fahey (1-1); A Moloney (0-2, one free), M Dunne; J Keane, P Acheson, J Lonergan; C Sweeney, M Quinlivan (0-1), P Austin (0-1).

Subs: B Hewitt for Sweeney (h/t), G Hannigan for Dunne (54 mins), I Fahey for Moloney (58 mins), S Leahy for Campbell (67 mins).

KILDARE: M Donnellan; P Kelly, C Fitzpatrick, O Lyons; D Hyland, F Conway, C O’Donoghue; K Feely, T Moolick (0-2); A Tyrrell (0-3, one free), N Kelly (1-0), E O’Flaherty (0-3, one free, one 45); D Flynn (1-2), P Cribbin (0-2), E Callaghan (0-1).

Subs: J Byrne for O’Donoghue (h/t), P O’Neill for Flynn (58 mins), A Smith for Tyrell (64 mins), K Murnaghan for Conway (67 mins), R Kelly for Cribbin (70+1 mins).

Referee: N Mooney (Cavan).

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