Dublin make the most of poor Lilywhite defence

Dublin dismantled Kildare’s creaking defence on their way to a resounding NFL Division One victory at Croke Park.

Dublin make the most of poor Lilywhite defence

Dublin 1-22 Kildare 1-12

Dublin dismantled Kildare’s creaking defence on their way to a resounding NFL Division One victory at Croke Park.

On a night of many positives for Jim Gavin’s side, the Dubs once again displayed their immense strength in depth, and welcomed back Alan Brogan, who signalled the end of a two-year injury nightmare by coming in as a half-time sub.

Kevin McManamon pressed home his claim for a regular starting place by leading the line with authority, and claiming a personal tally of eight points.

That there were only two goals in this richly entertaining game was quite remarkable, for both sides created a hatful of chances, but only Dublin’s Paddy Andrews and Kilare’s Darroch Mulhall were able to execute theirs. Kildare were denied by the woodwork on three occasions.

The All-Ireland champions have their push for the semi-finals firmly back on track, but for the Lilywhites, the future looks more uncertain, and they now face a battle to avoid relegation.

Dublin suffered a blow when Ciaran Kilkenny was forced off by injury in the early stages, with Davy Byrne coming into the side.

But after going behind early on to a Paddy Brophy point, they reeled off four scores in as many minutes, the best of them from Cian O’Sullivan, who put the finishing touches to a flowing move.

Kevin McManamon and Eoghan O’Gara were also on target in that highly productive spell, and the Dubs continued to put the Lilywhite defence under heavy pressure, with Paddy Andrews giving Hugh McGrillen a torrid time.

Winning the majority of breaking ball around midfield, they attacked from all angles, with wing back Johnny Cooper appearing on O’Sullivan’s shoulder to accept the pass and pop over his second point for a 0-6 to 0-3 lead.

And they pushed the advantage out to seven points with a 21st minute goal, Andrews beating McGrillen in the air to blast an unstoppable shot pat Shane Connolly.

McManamon also had a shot on goal blocked by McGrillen, and Kildare came close when Tomas O’Connor provided the pass to the far post for Cathal McNally to punch the ball against an upright.

Bryan Cullen’s 31st minute score gave the Dubs an eight point advantage, but Jason Ryan’s men got themselves right back into contention with a superb goal, Darroch Mulhall collecting O’Connor’s assist to pick his spot in the top corner.

And Paul Cribbin narrowed the gap to four in stoppage time, Dublin ahead by 1-10 to 1-6 at the interval.

Mulhall knocked over a couple of frees to keep Kildare with three points of the home side in the early stages of the second half, and they were denied a goal when Cathal McNally drilled a shot against a post.

Cluxton had to advance off his line to save from O’Connor, but a combination of those missed opportunities and the loss of full back Mick Foley to a black card contributed to their downfall.

They were overpowered in the final quarter by a Dublin side that attacked in waves, with Andrews, O’Sullivan and McManamon all slotting over points.

David Hyland became the second Kildare player to leave the action on a black card as the Dubs pulled ten points clear.

But in the dying moments, Kildare were denied by the woodwork for a third time, Mulhall drilling a free kick against the crossbar.

Dublin: S Cluxton (0-2, 1f, 1 ’45), P McMahon, S George, M Fitzsimons, J McCaffrey, J McCarthy, J Cooper (0-2), C O’Sullivan (0-2), MD Macauley, P Andrews (1-3), C Kilkenny, B Cullen (0-1), K McManamon (0-8, 4f), C Reddin, E O’Gara (0-2).

Subs: D Byrne (0-1) for Kilkenny, A Brogan for Reddin, D Nelson for Fitzsimons, S Carthy for Cullen, D Daly for Cooper, T Brady (0-1) for O’Sullivan

Kildare: S Connolly, M O’Grady, M Foley, H McGrillen, K Murnaghan, K Cribbin, P Cribbin (0-1), T Moolick, G White, C McNally, E O’Flaherty (0-2, 1f), S Hurley, P Brophy (0-1), T O’Connor, D Mulhall (1-6, 0-3f).

Subs: F Conway for McGrillen, P O’Neill for White, D Hyland for Foley (BC), P Fogarty (0-1) for K Cribbin, M Conway (0-1) for McNally, S Campbell for Hyland (BC)

Referee: M Duffy (Sligo).

More in this section

CourtsGaaHeathrowPlace: Croke ParkPerson: Jim GavinPerson: Alan BroganPerson: Kevin McManamonPerson: Paddy AndrewsPerson: Darroch MulhallPerson: LilywhitesPerson: Ciaran KilkennyPerson: Davy ByrnePerson: Paddy BrophyPerson: Cian O’SullivanPerson: Eoghan O’GaraPerson: LilywhitePerson: Hugh McGrillenPerson: Johnny CooperPerson: O’SullivanPerson: AndrewsPerson: McGrillenPerson: Shane ConnollyPerson: McManamonPerson: KildarePerson: Tomas O’ConnorPerson: Cathal McNallyPerson: Bryan CullenPerson: Jason RyanPerson: O’ConnorPerson: Paul CribbinPerson: MulhallPerson: CluxtonPerson: Mick FoleyPerson: David HylandPerson: P McMahonPerson: S GeorgePerson: M FitzsimonsPerson: J McCaffreyPerson: J McCarthyPerson: J CooperPerson: C O’SullivanPerson: MD MacauleyPerson: P AndrewsPerson: B CullenPerson: K McManamonPerson: C ReddinPerson: E O’GaraPerson: D ByrnePerson: ReddinPerson: D NelsonPerson: FitzsimonsPerson: S CarthyPerson: CullenPerson: D DalyPerson: CooperPerson: T BradyPerson: S ConnollyPerson: M O’GradyPerson: M FoleyPerson: H McGrillenPerson: K MurnaghanPerson: K CribbinPerson: P CribbinPerson: T MoolickPerson: G WhitePerson: C McNallyPerson: E O’FlahertyPerson: S HurleyPerson: PPerson: T O’ConnorPerson: F ConwayPerson: P O’NeillPerson: WhitePerson: D HylandPerson: FoleyPerson: P FogartyPerson: M ConwayPerson: McNallyPerson: S CampbellPerson: HylandPerson: M DuffyEvent: NFL Division OneOrganisation: DublinOrganisation: KildareOrganisation: DubsOrganisation: All-IrelandOrganisation: KilkennyOrganisation: BC
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