A fourth straight All-Ireland title for Dublin and a sixth this decade turned out to be their easiest as they swallowed Tyrone’s early promise and made the final their own.
Goals from Paul Mannion and Niall Scully were key to the psychological dismantling of Tyrone, whose best performers were out on their feet long before the final whistle and duly replaced.
Those goals and nine first-half wides cut Tyrone deep and with so much of a cushion the second half took on a processional theme.
Colm Cavanagh did earn a penalty against Philly McMahon, which Peter Harte struck past Stephen Cluxton, in the 67th minute to make it a five-point game, and it became four when John Small’s second yellow card foul on Harte was penalised by Lee Brennan but Kevin McManamon then restored Dublin’s advantage.
Pádraig Hampsey, searching to set up a goal, kicked too long and over the bar and Ciarán Kilkenny followed it with a point, his raised fist confirmation that Dublin had indeed created some history, and Michael Darragh Macauley added another for good measure.
Tyrone’s beginning was electric and just what was required after last year’s false start when Con O’Callaghan’s goal virtually finished the match as a contest. And yet the margin at half-time today was the same last year, a seven-point lead for Dublin (2-7 to 0-6).
Seizing on Dublin’s early kick-outs and turning over ball with ferocious intensity, Tyrone kept Dublin to just one point for the opening 17 minutes and their five points hardly flattered them given how much of the ball was in their possession.
Mark Bradley was involved in so much good and Conor Meyler was playing with endeavour. Dean Rock was wayward with a couple of frees but ended the half with three points from play as Dublin, like true champions, worked their way into the game. Kilkenny scored his first ever All-Ireland point in the 18th minute and then Dublin bossed the Tyrone restart, scoring 1-2 from Niall Morgan’s next three kicks.
His first went straight to Kilkenny who fed O’Callaghan who in turn supplied Mannion who was fouled by Tiernan McCann as he was able to pull the trigger. Mannion, after dusting himself off, made no mistake with the penalty.
Rock was on the end of the next two points, initiated by Dublin claiming Tyrone kick-outs, and any panic in the Leinster winners’ ranks was gone. A Cathal McShane point followed in the 24th minute but that was Tyrone’s last of the half as Dublin finished it out with 1-3.
The goal came in the 28th minute, a little piece of trickery from Con O’Callaghan setting it up, and while Conor Lane felt he had not been impeded by Mattie Donnelly he was able to offload to Scully to palm
the ball to the net.
Two Rock scores finished out the half and yet Tyrone could count themselves lucky not to lose Colm Cavanagh after a clear black card foul on O’Callaghan was not seen as such by Lane.
Scorers for Dublin: D. Rock (0-7, 3 frees, 1 45); P. Mannion (1-1, 1-0pen); N. Scully (1-0); C. Kilkenny (0-3); B. Fenton (0-2); J. McCaffrey, B. Howard, K. McManamon, M.D. Macauley (0-1 each).
Scorers for Tyrone: P. Harte (1-1, 1-0 pen, 0-1 free); L. Brennan (frees), C. McAliskey (1 free) (0-3 each); M. Bradley, C. McShane (0-2 each); T. McCann, K. McGeary, P. Hampsey (0-1 each).
DUBLIN: S. Cluxton (c); P. McMahon, C. O’Sullivan, J. Cooper; J. Small, E. Murchan, J. McCaffrey; B. Fenton, J. McCarthy; N. Scully, C. O’Callaghan, B. Howard; P. Mannion, C. Kilkenny, D. Rock.
Subs for Dublin: M. Fitzsimons for C. O’Sullivan (inj 27); C. Costello for N. Scully (53); K. McManamon for P. Mannion, D. Daly for E. Murchan (inj) (both 58); E. Lowndes for J. Cooper (64); M.D. Macauley for D. Rock (67). Sent off: J. Cooper (second yellow, 70+1).
TYRONE: N. Morgan, R. McNamee, T. McCann, P. Hampsey; M. McKernan, M. Donnelly (c), R. Brennan; C. Cavanagh, C. Meyler; K. McGeary, N. Sludden, C. McShane; M. Bradley, P. Harte, C. McAliskey.
Subs for Tyrone: L. Brennan for C. Meyler (40); F. Burns for N. Sludden (46); H. Loughran for K. McGeary (black), R. Donnelly for C. McAliskey (both 49); D. McClure for C. McShane (56); R. O’Neill for M. Bradley (63).
Referee: C. Lane (Cork).