Allianz Football League: thrilling final ends in penalty shootout between Dublin and Derry

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In an exhilarating final at Croke Park for Division 1, DUBLIN and DERRY ended in a 3-18 to 2-21 stalemate which required a nerve-wracking penalty shootout for decisive results, which Derry won 3-1.

The first half was marked by a single goal from Dublin, scored by Colm Basquel following an error in Derry’s defense.

Two Derry goals in four early second half minutes threatened to turn the game on its head. Shane McGuigan obliged from the penalty spot to put Derry a point up.

Derry was leading by two in the 54th minute. Derry stretched their cushion to four points through a Lachlan Murray mark. However, Dublin refused to surrender and fought back.

Level at half-time 1-7 to 0-10, Con O’Callaghan had the chance to send the game into extra-time with Dublin 1-18 Derry 2-15.

Though Dublin lost key players Brian Fenton and Paddy Small due to red cards, they refused to concede defeat as Greg McEneaney scored an equalizing goal in the dying moments of injury time.

Derry’s momentum seemed unstoppable, but Dublin managed to hold on until the penalty shootout.

Moments That Mattered

In the first half, Colm Basquel scored the lone goal for Dublin, capitalizing on Derry’s defensive miscues and a rebound chance.

In the second half, Derry seized the lead with two remarkable goals. Firstly, Shane McGuigan capitalized on a foul against Ethan Doherty in the penalty area and confidently slotted the ball home. Subsequently, Eoin McEvoy showcased his exceptional skill by scoring an impressive goal from an acute angle, which bounced off the underside of the crossbar and into the net.

In a thrilling turnaround during the closing stages of the second half, Dublin rallied back with an impressive display of determination and skill, scoring four vital goals in the final minutes to secure extra-time and maintain their chances of winning the league title.

The closing moments of injury time brought about a significant setback for Dublin when both Brian Fenton and Paddy Small were shown straight red cards due to an altercation, reducing their squad size to 13 players.

It was a deserving win for Derry who could have doubled their three-goal haul by the end of extra-time.

Irish Examiner

The goalscoring tally for the thrilling Division 1 final at Croke Park saw Dublin registering a meager one goal against Derry’s impressive three-goal haul on penalties.

For Derry, Shane McGuigan, Conor Glass and Ethan Doherty all found their mark.

For Dublin, Paul Mannion was the only Dublin player to convert. Con O’Callaghan smashed his shot against the crossbar, while Lorcan O’Dell’s attempt was saved by Odhrán Lynch and Tom Lahiff’s strike hit the butt of the post.

Players to Watch

Colm Basquel, the Dublin forward, demonstrated his clinical finishing skills by capitalizing on a defensive error in the first half, scoring the only goal of the game for his team at that point.

Cormac Murphy’s exceptional playmaking abilities significantly contributed to Derry’s attacking prowess, as evidenced by his two pinpoint assists that led to Eoin McEvoy scoring the goals which briefly put Derry ahead in their intense battle against Dublin.

In a critical turning point during the second half, Cormac Murphy provided a remarkable assist that led to Eoin McEvoy’s impressive goal under the bar for Derry, momentarily extending their advantage against Dublin.

Worth mentioning is Evan Comerford’s unyielding guardianship between the posts. Dublin’s tenacious determination to clinch victory was underpinned by their unwavering goalkeeper, Evan Comerford, who thwarted numerous attempts from Derry with his remarkable saves, particularly during the extended periods of play.

This exciting spectacle was witnessed by a crowd of 33,145 in Croke Park, where Derry converted all three of their penalties to capture their first top-flight title in 16 years.

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