Updated: February 6th, 2024

Allianz FL: Derry overcome Tyrone challenge

Conor Glass’ late goal capped a wonderful Derry display that saw the Ulster champions make it two wins from two in Division One at Celtic Park on Sunday.

Game Recap

By Michael Wilson (from GAA.ie)

Derry 1-12 Tyrone 0-9

With Cormac Murphy impressing on his full league debut, Derry played with the strong wind at their backs first half, but led by only three at the break and Tyrone would have fancied their chances.

However, Tyrone’s second half fight back never materialised as they shot 10 wides after half-time and went 33 minutes either side of the break without troubling the scoreboard.

In contrast, Derry went through the gears with Murphy terrorising the Red Hand backline, that Glass goal capping a hugely impressive display from the Ulster champions.

Murphy’s match winning contribution in Tralee earned him a first league start at the expense of Declan Cassidy, but otherwise it was as you were from the 15 that left Kerry with the two points. Tyrone, meanwhile, welcomed back Darren McCurry, but his return was offset by the loss of the influential Peter Harte.

Derry were backed first half by the considerable Celtic Park breeze, blowing in from the Bandywell End of Celtic Park, but it failed to translate into any real superiority on the scoreboard.

Derry deployed Conor McCluskey on the dangerous Darragh Canavan and in the first half at least the pair cancelled each out, but it was probably the visitors who changed ends the happier with Derry ahead by three at 0-8 to 0-5.

The opening exchanges saw both counties fashion decent goal chances, but neither was able to capitalise. After Cormac Murphy had teed up Shane McGuigan for Derry’s opener, Paudie McGrogan played in Niall Loughlin for a second point.

Sixty seconds later Padraig Hampsey came to Tyrone’s rescue with a great block on a goalbound Ciaran McFaul shot after Derry opened up the visitors once more.

But Tyrone settled to their task though, Ciaran Daly getting them on the scoreboard on six minutes and better should have followed two minutes later when Ruairi Canavan released Aodhan Donaghy through on goal only for Odhran Lynch to produce a superb save.

Stung into action, Derry reeled off points through Murphy, McGuigan, Padraig McGrogan and Ethan Doherty to move five ahead at 0-6 to 0-1 by the 16th minute but instead of pushing on the Oak Leafers stepped back and Tyrone took advantage, outscoring their hosts by 0-4 to 0-2 over the remainder of the half to give the game a different complexion.

A brilliant Niall Morgan free against the elements was followed by efforts from Donaghy and Darren McCurry (f), a run punctuated by a free from Shane McGuigan at the other end for 0-7 to 0-4.

Another Canavan free was cancelled out by a lovely Ethan Doherty point, but even with Derry leading 0-8 to 0-5, the Red Hands were still in contention.

Within the opening eight minutes of the second half Tyrone hit four wides and saw one effort drop short.

Controlled and efficient in possession, Murphy was the Oak Leaf wildcard and his pace and trickery was causing all sorts of trouble.

Ethan Doherty’s point took Derry’s lead out to 0-12 to 0-5 on 53 minutes and when Seanie O’Donnell eventually split the posts for Tyrone on 57 minutes it marked the end of a 33 minute scoring drought for the Red Hands.

The closing minutes saw Derry hold possession and Tyrone almost resigned to their fate, but there was still time for Glass’ goal, lobbing home Derry’s first goal of the county season from 30 metres. They didn’t need it, but it was a lovely icing on the Derry cake.

Teams and scorers

Scorers for Derry: Conor Glass 1-0, Ethan Doherty, Cormac Murphy, and Shane McGuigan (1f) 0-3 each, Niall Loughlin, Conor Doherty, and Padraig McGrogan 0-1 each.

Scorers for Tyrone: Seán O’Donnell and Ciarán Daly 0-2 each, Aodhan Donaghy, Brian Kennedy, Darragh Canavan (f), Niall Morgan (f), and Darren McCurry (f) 0-1 each.

Derry: Odhran Lynch, Conor McCluskey, Chrissy McKaigue, Diarmuid Baker, Conor Doherty, Gareth McKinless, Padraig Grogan, Conor Glass, Brendan Rogers, Ethan Doherty, Cormac Murphy, Paul Cassidy, Niall Loughlin, Shane McGuigan, Ciaran McFaul.

Subs: Niall Toner for G McKinless, 36mins; Ryan Scullion for O Lynch (inj), 46mins; Declan Cassidy for N Loughlin, 57mins; Donncha Gilmore for C Glass, 70mins; Emmett Bradley for P Cassidy, 70mins.

Tyrone: Niall Morgan, Conall Devlin, Padraig Hampsey, Aidan Clarke, Ruairi Canavan, Michael McKernan, Ben Cullen, Brian Kennedy, Tarlach Quinn, Niall Devlin, Aodhan Donaghy, Seanie O’Donnell, Darren McCurry, Darragh Canavan, Ciaran Daly.

Subs: Michael McGleenan for B Cullen, 50mins; Joe Oguz for R Canavan, 57mins; Conor Cush for D McCurry, 61mins; Nathan McCarron for M McKernan (inj), 64mins;

Referee: Noel Mooney (Cavan).