Minors well beaten by slick Armagh

The county’s U17s have followed the Seniors out of the Championship this weekend. They were well beaten this evening by a fast-moving and slick Armagh team, losing out at a sun-washed Pearse Park in Longford by 0-16 to 1-6.

We got the dream start in this game. From our first attack inside the opening minute Andrew Quinn wriggled clear, bore down on goal and buried it to the net.

We enjoyed the better of the exchanges in the opening quarter. Kobe McDonald curled over a superb free off the ground before Eoin Duffy opened the scoring for them. Then Shea Loughran and Kobe, from another free, traded scores as we maintained our three-point lead.

Already, though, there were broad hints that all was not well from our perspective. Duffy saw a piledriver come back off the post and they had a second goal chance on 16 minutes but once again it was power over precision as the ball cannoned back out off the crossbar.

Soon, however, the Orchard County lads began to find their range. Three points on the spin, two from the excellent Eoin Duffy (one a mark) and the other from their raiding half-back Diarmuid O’Rourke, hauled them level.

Oisín Deane gave the travelling Mayo support something to cheer about when he fisted over but O’Rourke was soon galloping forward to fire over a second score.

When James McCooe slotted over from a central position, it was clear we were in bother. Their passing and movement was so sharp and they were now knifing through us at will.

We hit back, though, with one from play from Kobe. That was, however, our final score for a full 25 minutes and, by the time we finally got our next white flag, our race was well run in this game.

We went in at half-time level. But we also went in having lost Owen Loughney to injury, Conor Kavanagh replacing him, and the absence of the Lacken player who has been so influential for us up to now unsettled us in a sector where Armagh became increasingly dominant.

It was like we couldn’t keep the ball off them after the break. Point after point flew over our bar – six before we finally managed to nab one ourselves, from Oisín Deane. They went on to canter to an easy seven-point win and, with it, a date with Derry in the second all-Ulster All-Ireland Minor final in a row.

This was an underage game so anything said about it needs to be couched with that fact borne in mind. It was a game that spun out of control from our lads’ perspective and try as they might – and they tried their hardest – there was no wresting it back from a determined Armagh team. There’s no shame in that.

Despite today’s loss it’s been a positive year for us at Minor level, where we won our third Connacht title in a row. Like last year we came unstuck against superior Ulster opposition but, like twelve months ago, so too did the best teams from Munster and Leinster as well.

Hard luck to the lads on today’s loss and well done to them for the progress they made this year.

Mayo: Nathan Roddy; Conor Coghill, Tom Hession, Daithí Butler; David Hurley, Mark |Noonan, Mark Sheerin; Josh Moyles, Owen Loughney; Harry McHale, Kobe McDonald (0-3, two frees), Dylan Flynn; Barry Langan, Oisín Deane (0-2), Andrew Quinn (1-0). Subs: Conor Kavanagh for Loughney, Joe Forry for Sheerin, Evan Walsh for McHale, Jack O’Malley (0-1) for Quinn, Fionn Ó Cinsealla for Langan.

We’ll have a Final Whistle pod from Longford up on Patreon shortly.

5 thoughts on “Minors well beaten by slick Armagh

  1. Tough luck for our minors but In fairness outclassed by a really impressive Armagh team. Good win in Connacht and an excellent performance v Cork so I didn’t expect tonight’s hammering. I thought Armagh weee top class so an all Ulster final now. Not really surprised at that as school football is very strong in Ulster at the moment and Tyrone had an excellent u 29 team this year . Only surprise on here was that not many blamed management because that is usually the default position of a lot of posters. Remember the witch hunt on Sheridan for 2 years and our u 20 management copped a bit this year as well Horan was at fault with the senior team for a few years and of course it was McStay at fault as we conceded last minute scores v Galway, Dublin and Derry. Anyway it’s been a horrible weekend but I would just like to say well done to both Mayo teams and management. A big congratulations to Louth and Roscommon. Great achievement to get to the quarters Doesn’t make us feel any better but well done to both counties

  2. Hard luck to the minors –
    Some good players but Armagh were more organised and notably bigger. They’ll learn a lot from this defeat after some strong performances this year. They’re young and will bounce back as individuals and some
    Will move on to under 20s no doubt.
    Anyone know what age Kobe is and will he be eligible for minor next year again?

  3. Hard luck to the mayo minor team they were well beaten by a super Armagh side that were a lot more skillful and faster than us.they used both wings effectively.we had no answer to there running game. The Armagh management team had there homework done on how mayo play and bossed the game from 10th minute onwards. Our management team had no answer tactically to the way Armagh played which is needed when you come up against a quality opposition as good as Armagh were today.you need to be as good on the sidelines as you are on the pitch to win games like today & unfortunately we weren’t good enough on the pitch or the sidelines.

  4. I thought this was so frustrating. As the game progressed, Armagh overran us; however when it was in the melting pot, we took every wrong option you could think of, and were naive in every thing we tried, both on the pitch and on the sidelines.

  5. I think it was obvious that these young lads were very unsettled after Owen Loughney went off. These fellas have been playing together for the past 3 years, so there was the loss of Owen on the field, but also the fact that when they went into the dressing room at half time, it was clear that he suffered a severe concussion which was bound to rattle them. There is a lot of talent in that team so hopefully we’ll see more of them at under 20 and senior in future

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