Coleraine crowned Derry champions for second time

O'Neill's Derry Senior Football Championship Final

Sunday, 21st October 2018, 6:24 pm
Updated Sunday, 21st October 2018, 9:55 pm
Liam MCGoldrick was superb as Eoghan Rua clinched a second Derry senior title at Celtic Park on Sunday

Eoghan Rua 1-12, Lavey 0-12

Eoghan Rua Coleraine are the Derry Senior Football champions for a second time after a fully deserved three point victory over Lavey in front of 3,700 spectators in Celtic Park on Sunday.

Colm McGoldrick became only the second ever Eoghan Rua man to lift the John McLaughlin trophy as Lavey left it too late with a late second half charge led by half-time substitute Cailean O'Boyle who scored 0-7 after being introduced.

Liam MCGoldrick was superb as Eoghan Rua clinched a second Derry senior title at Celtic Park on Sunday

Coleraine though deserved the win with Liam McGoldrick superb but he was hard pressed by Barry Daly and Niall Hlly for the 'Man of the Match' honours.

Lavey had started well, pressing the favourites and creating chances but they would regret some wasteful shooting as the ended the half with five wides and two shots dropped short after failing to score for the final 25 minutes of the half.

In contrast, Coleraine had the composure of a side who had played in county finals before, even if this was only the third in their history and eight years since that solitary victory back in 2010.

The fact nine starting for Eoghan Rua on Sunday had also started in that victory over Ballinderry highlighted the continuity and experience of Sean McGoldrick's side.

It took Chris Henry only 45 seconds to open the scoring for Lavey and while Gavin McWilliams levelled, Eamon McGill put Lavey back in front and things looked set for a tight half.

However McGill's point would be his side final score until the first minute of the second half.

In between, Coleraine took control with Daly's 11th minute goal the platform on which they built. The live-wire corner-back covered almost every inch of the Celtic Park pitch and when Colm McGoldrick spotted his run, Daly's failure to control actually offered the chance to finish first time and he took the opportunity with some panache for a 1-02 0-02 advantage.

With Niall Holly controlling midfield matters, Coleraine went into game management mode for the remainder of the half, calming the tempo down when necessary and frustrating the youthful Lavey line-up.

Liam McGoldrick, determined to prove Daly wasn't the only scoring member of Coleraine's full back line, then popped up with two fine points, the second after a superb mazy run through the Lavey rearguard.

Those points came either side of a Colm McGoldrick free for Coleraine and while Eamon McGill saw an effort strike the post, Lavey were second best as they turned around trailing 1-05 to 0-2.

Erin's Own responded by sending on O'Boyle and Colm Murphy and the former scored within 28 seconds of the restart to breath new life into the Lavey challenge.

O'Boyle's presence gave the Erin's Own attack the focal point it had been missing in the first half but Coleraine never panicked even when O'Boyle took his personal tally to three points within eight minutes of coming on.

The loss of the experienced Michael Drumm to a text book black card after he hauled Ruairi Mooney down when he threatened to go clear was a major blow, Colm McGoldrick tapping over the subsequent free.

Liam McGoldrick and Anthony McGurk swapped points for 1-07 to 0-06 with 43 minutes on the clock as McGoldrick then took his personal tally to 0-4 with another free.

Colm McGoldrick extended the lead still further and at 1-10 to 0-06 Coleraine looked to have the game won until O'Boyle grabbed three successive frees to offer Lavey hope once more at 1-10 to 0-09 with three minutes to play.

Liam Murphy brought it back to a one score game with a lovely point but that man McGoldrick then surged forward to win his side a crucial free which Gavin McWilliams tapped over.

Niall Toner and another O'Boyle free left only two between the sides but the goal Lavey needed never came as Sean Leo McGoldrick's late point signalled a second Derry senior title for Eoghan Rua who will now take on Cavan champions Castlerahan in the Ulster Club Championship.

Eoghan Rua scorers: Barry Daly (1-0), Gavin McWilliams (0-2), Colm McGoldrick (0-4, 4f), Liam McGoldrick (0-4, 2f), Ciaran McGoldrick (0-1), Sean Leo McGoldrick (0-1)

Lavey scorers: Chris Henry (0-1); Eamon McGill (0-1), Cailean O'Boyle (0-7, 6f), Anthony McGurk (0-1), Liam Murphy (0-1), Niall Toner (0-1)

Eoghan Rua: Ryan McGeough; Ciaran Lagan, Liam McGoldrick, Barry Daly; Ciaran Mullan, Barry McGoldrick, Ciaran Lenehan; Niall Holly, Paul Daly; Ruairi Mooney, Sean Leo McGoldrick, Gavin Williams; Mark McTaggart, Colm McGoldrick, Ciaran McGoldrick.

(Subs) Declan Mullan for M McTaggart, 37mins;

Lavey: Ciaron O'Boyle; Aidan Toner, Conor Mulholland, Shane Lagan; Colm Dillon, Michael Drumm, Eamon McGill; Damina Chivers, Caolan McGurk; Shane McGill, Niall Toner, Anthony McGurk; Chrissy Henry, Kevin O'Neill, Declan Hughes.

(Subs) Cailean O'Boyle for K O'Neill, HT; Colm Murphy for C Dillon, HT; Sam Ddds for M Drumm (Black Card), 34mins; Liam Murphy for C Henry, 50mins; Ryan Farren for S Lagan, 55mins;

Yellow Cards: K O'Neill 29mins; D Chivers, 35mins;

Black Card: M Drumm, 32mins;

Referee: Damian Harkin (Slaughtmanus)