O'Rourke frustrated by McKeever dismissal

O'Rourke frustrated by McKeever dismissal

Armagh manager Paddy O'Rourke has spoken of his frustration as to why the Orchard men were left with 14 men from half-time yesterday.

Armagh suffered their third straight Allianz Football League defeat when going down to Laois yesterday, with the Orchard County's woes compounded by the half-time dismissal of All-Ireland and two-time National League winner Ciarán McKeever.

"To lose the man at half-time was an incredibly bizarre decision," said O'Rourke.

"We honestly don’t know why we lost him, he doesn’t know why. He said nothing happened in the tunnel. Why we lost him I don’t know."

With the teams ready for the second half, referee Michael Duffy issued a red card to the St Patrick's Cullyhanna clubman before he had thrown the ball in.

McKeever failed to leave the pitch until the arrival of Armagh selector Paul Grimley, who also protested to the Sligo whistler before he ushered McKeever towards the sideline.

Laois manager Justin McNulty, who was part of the Armagh squad alongside McKeever when they claimed league honours in 2004, said that McKeever was sent off because of an alleged strike in the tunnel at the break.

"There was an incident at half-time which the linesman happened to witness which Ciarán was sent off for," he said. "Ciarán will know when you do that sort of thing, you have to pay the consequences.

"It was a striking action in the tunnel which the linesman witnessed right next to him, so you pay the consequences for that."

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