Updated May 15th 2021, 9:20 PM
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THE MANAGERIAL SIDESHOW was an intriguing one; Mickey Harte’s first competitive game in charge of Louth ultimately ending in defeat, while Enda McGinley’s reign at the Antrim helm opened in victory.
Not only was it the perfect start to McGinley’s Saffron tenure, it was a win over his former Tyrone boss. And it came after a dramatic finish to a thrilling Allianz Football League Division 4 North encounter, the scoreboard reading 1-15 to 3-8 at the death.
Louth looked to be in the driving seat down the home straight, captain Sam Mulroy rattling the net for his second goal in the 64th minute. But three superb injury-time points — courtesy of Paddy Cunningham, Eunan Walsh and Ryan Murray, who scored the last before he was sent off in the dying seconds — meant it was Antrim opened their 2021 campaign on a winning note.
Dermot McAleese scored the eventual winners’ goal in the 14th minute, his stunning outside-of-the-boot effort finding the top corner. Murray top-scored for McGinley’s side, his 0-6 (0-4 from frees) helping them over the line despite a two-point half time deficit.
Mulroy was Louth’s star man, posting 2-2 and at the heart of all they did right in the forward line. Sean Marry scored their other goal, but it’s now back to the drawing board for Harte and his troops, before facing Leitrim next weekend. It’s Sligo up next for Antrim.
Harte and McGinley back in 2010.
Source: James Crombie
Elsewhere in Division 3 North, Fermanagh beat reigning Ulster champions Cavan by the minimum in an intriguing, and heated, contest, in which both sides were reduced to 14 men.
The returning Sean Quigley starred for the Erne men with nine points, seven of those from play, as the hosts at Brewster Park recoded a big win over the match favourites.
Quigley and Cavan debutant Patrick Lynch led the scoring charge for their respective sides in a tight encounter, which was level at half time — though Mickey Graham’s Breffni reduced were 14 just before the break, after Conor Brady saw red for hitting out at Eoin Donnelly.
Eight minutes after the restart, James McMahon saw a second yellow to level the numbers. Quigley punished Cavan’s ill-discipline down the home straight, and despite a series of late frees from All-Star nominee Gearoid McKiernan, the visitors left empty handed. They face Longford next week, while Fermanagh travel to Derry.
Sean Quigley (file pic).
Source: James Crombie/INPHO
On that, Rory Gallagher’s Oak Leaf side got off to the dream start with a comprehensive 16-point win over Longford at Pearse Park.
Derry were in fine form despite the torrential rain, bagging their first win at the venue since 2002. Former AFL star Conor Glass marked his return to inter-county football with 0-2 and a towering display in midfield while Slaughtneil’s Shane McGuigan top-scored for the side in a 0-21 to 0-5 win.
And Carlow ran out comprehensive 3-16 to 0-10 winners over Shane Ronayne’s Waterford at Fraher Field in Division 4 South, Niall Carew’s men enjoying an impressive start.
Allianz Football League Division 3 North
- Longford 0-5 Derry 0-21
- Fermanagh 0-15 Cavan 0-14
Allianz Football League Division 3 South
- Limerick 1-13 Tipperary 0-14 (full report here>)
Allianz Football League Division 4 North
- Louth 3-8 Antrim 1-15
Allianz Football League Division 4 South
- Waterford 0-10 Carlow 3-16.