Ciaran Archer was Dublin’s main target man as they demolished Longford in Glennon Brothers Pearse Park to advance to the Leinster U20 Football Championship semi-final. Dublin were ruthless and clinical throughout with the St Maur’s clubman scoring 3-8 (five frees) of his county’s tally. The scoreline could have been bigger had Dublin put away all the goal chances they created.
It was like shooting practice for the Dubs in both halves. Archer opened the scoring inside the second minute kicking over a free. He added three more points to the scoreline (one free) before he raised the green flag for the first time in the 12th minute; catching Donal Ryan’s free before turning and shooting low to the net.
He hit the post one minute later as the Dubs continued to attack. Longford’s opening score came in the 17th minute when Oran Kenny pointed over a free. He added another but that was all Longford could score in the first half.
Points from Archer (three frees), Brian O’Leary (two), James Doran (free) and Ross McGarry (one free) gave Dublin an unassailable 17-point lead at the break: 1-16 to 0-02. Just 22 seconds had elapsed on the clock in the second half when Dublin kicked over their 17th point through Doran. Karl Lynch Bissett blasted his low drive wide as Dublin were unrelenting.
In the 32nd minute Dublin scored their second goal; Longford keeper Patrick Murray saved Brian O’Leary’s initial shot but substitute Harry Ladd finished the rebound. Five minutes later and it got worse for Longford when Dublin were awarded a penalty. Archer duly dispatched the spot-kick despite the valiant efforts of Murray.
Ladd hit the butt of the post in the 44th minute as Longford struggled to contain the Dubs or handle their physicality.
Dublin stretched their advantage to 26 points in the 49th minute. The biggest cheer of the evening came in the 50th minute when Joe Hagan kicked Longford’s first point of the second half; their third overall.
Hagan kicked over a free before Aidan McGuire sent over an excellent score to register Longford’s fifth point. Those points were quickly cancelled out with a Ladd point and Archer’s third goal of the game.
Kenny kicked over late frees for Longford but this game was over as a contest in the 12th minute when Archer scored his first goal.
P Murray; G Hughes, PJ Masterson, D Corcoran; E McCormack, P Duggan, S Farrell; N Farrelly, D O’Brien; G Flynn, J Hagan (0-2,1f), K Gilmore; O Kenny (0-4,4f), A McGuire (0-1), J Shiels.
D Cigliano for Farrell (25), E Keogh for Gilmore (ht) S Campbell for Duggan and P Molloy for Shiels (34), J Martin for Flynn (38), E Smyth for Corcoran (56)
D O’Hanlon; D Maher, D Newcombe, E O’Dea; K Kennedy, N Matthews, S Lambe; P O’Cofaigh Byrne, D Ryan; N O’Leary, K Lynch Bissett (0-1), J Doran (0-2); B O’Leary (0-2), C Archer (3-8,5f), R McGarry (0-4,1f).
H Ladd (1-2) for McGarry (ht), A Lynch for Maher and M Lavin (0-1) for O’Leary (41), D Lacey (0-1) for Doran (49), D Conlon for Matthews (50), S Farrelly for O’Cofaigh Byrne Referee: F Smyth (Offaly)