Updated: June 24th, 2024

AI SFC: Derry through to last eight after shootout win over Mayo

Conor Doherty shot Derry into the quarter finals of the All Ireland Senior Football Championship at the expense of Mayo following penalty drama in MacHale Park on Saturday evening.

Game Recap

from GAA.ie

Mayo 1-12 Derry 0-15 (AET, Derry win 4-3 on penalties)

A thrilling contest that had everything saw last minute fightbacks from both teams, Chrissy McKaigue’s 75th minute equaliser keeping Derry alive before Jordan Flynn played a similar role for Mayo in injury time of extra-time to send the tie to penalties.

Cillian and Diarmuid O’Connor and Conor Loftus all scored from the spot for Kevin McStay’s team, but Paul Towey struck a post and the otherwise excellent Ryan O’Donoghue saw his effort saved by Odhran Lynch.

That meant, even after Ethan Dohery sent his effort wide, successful penalties from Shane McGuigan, Conor Glass and Ciaran McFaul left Doherty with one to win it. Mayo keeper Colm Reape got a hand to Doherty’s shot, but couldn’t keep it out meaning Derry will be in the hat for the last eight draw.

It was a dramatic finale to real championship encounter, Brendan Rogers, Ethan Doherty (2) and Shane McGuigan points in extra-time seemingly putting Derry in line for a first ever championship win in MacHale Park over Mayo.

But Mayo fought back with Flynn (2), Paul Towey and Conor Loftus scoring, meaning the sides could only be separated from the spot.

With Gareth McKinless and Conor Doherty reinstated to the Oak Leaf starting line-up at the expense of Donncha Gilmore and Eunan Mulholland, the Allianz League Division One champions got off to a encouraging start with a Lachlan Murray inspired opening half.

The All Ireland minor winning forward hit four points, two of them sublime efforts from distance, as Mickey Harte’s men bossed an opening half after which they deservedly led by three at 0-6 to 0-4. With Conor Glass and Ciaran McFaul patrolling the edge of the scoring zone, Derry had a more secure feel than in the earlier championship defeats to Donegal, Galway and Mayo.

By contrast Mayo looked laboured in a half in which no forward scored from play. Too much of the build-up play from McStay’s men was slow and sideways with too many attacks breaking down due to misplaced passes, a half which stood in stark contrast to the display against Dublin seven days earlier.

Conor Doherty, Derry, and Eoghan McLaughlin, Mayo, in All-Ireland SFC action at Hastings Insurance MacHale Park. Photo by Seb Daly/Sportsfile

Conor Doherty, Derry, and Eoghan McLaughlin, Mayo, in All-Ireland SFC action at Hastings Insurance MacHale Park. Photo by Seb Daly/Sportsfile

Murray got his team off to the perfect start on eight minutes with a mark and Derry took great confidence from the opening minutes. Sam Callinan equalised with what would prove his side’s only score from play in the first half on 11 minutes as Mayo got precious little out of a disciplined Derry backline.

A Shane McGuigan free edged Derry back in front before Murray showed his pedigree once more with another lovely score before, after Tommy Conroy was fouled, Ryan O’Donoghue tapped the free.

It was first score in 13 minutes for Mayo who, despite Derry’s dominance, trailed by only one at 0-3 to 0-2 with 21 minutes gone and it could have been better as Stephen Coen came within inches of the game’s opening goal.

The chance came from a slip by Odhran Lynch after Jack Coyne’s pointed effort dropped short. The Derry No. 1 couldn’t gather first time and Coen was on it in an instant but Eoin McEvoy did superbly to get just enough pressure on the midfielder whose toe poke dribbled inches the wrong side of the post.

Another Murray wonder point was followed by the Desertmartin player then turning on the afterburners to go past Conroy and first his second point in two minutes from the opposite side of the field.

McGuigan’s second free of the half had Derry 0-6 to 0-2 ahead five minutes before half-time and while an off the ball foul on Aidan O’Shea by Brendan Rogers allowed O’Donghue to reduce the deficit, the home side had plenty of work to do.

McStay’s reaction to his team’s poor first half was to introduce Conor Loftus in place of Eoghan McLaughlin and within two minutes a Conroy mark was the signal for a more intense Mayo display.

Two minutes later Conroy was at it again, firing over a second point in two minutes as Mayo took advantage of a second turnover inside the opening four minutes of the half to bring Derry’s advantage back to the minimum at 0-6 to 0-5.

Seconds later the lead was gone as O’Shea held off both Glass and Doherty to raise the decibel level inside MacHale Park and when McEvoy was turned over and penalised, O’Donoghue’s third free put Mayo in front for the first time in the game with 44 minutes gone.

Derry were reeling but Brendan Rogers showed what a leader he is, stepping inside on to his right foot to bring Derry level before Gareth McKinless capped a great Oak Leaf response by shooting Derry back in front at 0-8 to 0-7 on 47 minutes.

Then came the penalty as O’Donoghue kept his cool to slot home.

Lachlan Murray’s fifth point of a brilliant display showed Derry weren’t going to go quietly, but they were indebted to Lynch for an excellent full length save from Matty Ruane, albeit it came at the cost of O’Donoghue’s first from play on the rebound.

That kept the lead at 1-8 to 0-9, but Shane McGuigan’s first from play on 67 minutes ensured a grandstand finale which saw Glass’ 75th minute effort strike the post and McKaigue on hand to fist over the equaliser off the rebound.

And so to extra-time, penalties and the reignition of Derry’s championship challenge.

Derry scorers: Lachlan Murray 0-5 (1m), Shane McGuigan 0-4 (2fs), Brendan Rogers and Ethan Doherty 0-2 each, Gareth McKinless and Chrissy McKaigue 0-1 each.

Scorers for Mayo: Ryan O’Donoghue 1-4 (1-0 pen, 3fs), Jordan Flynn and Tommy Conroy 0-2 each, Paul Towey, Sam Callinan, Conor Loftus, and Aidan O’Shea 0-1 each.

Mayo: Colm Reape, Jack Coyne, David McBrien, Donnacha McHugh, Rory Brickenden, Sam Callinan, Eoghan McLaughlin, Stephen Coen, Matthew Ruane, Tommy Conroy, Darren McHale, Jordan Flynn, Aidan O’Shea, Jack Carney, Ryan O’Donoghue.

Subs: Conor Loftus for E McLaughin, HT; Diarmuid O’Connor for D McHale, 53mins; Enda Hession for J Coyne, 57mins; Cillian O’Connor for M Ruane, 67mins; Bob Tuohy for A O’Shea, 71mins; Michael Plunkett for S Callinan, 86mins.

Derry: Odhran Lynch, Conor McCluskey, Christopher McKaigue, Diarmuid Baker, Ciaran McFaul, Eoin McEvoy, Conor Doherty, Conor Glass, Brendan Rogers, Ethan Doherty, Emmett Bradley, Paul Cassidy, Gareth McKinless, Shane McGuigan, Lachlan Murray.

Subs: Eunan Mulholland for E Bradley, 43mins; Donncha Gilmore for C Doherty, 66mins; Cormac Murphy for P Cassidy, 66mins; Niall Toner for L Murray, 71mins; Ruairi Forbes for D Baker, 71mins; Conor Doherty for D Barker, 82mins.

Referee: Brendan Cawley (Kildare).