Louth ease past Kildare to win three in a row
Allianz Football League Division Two
Louth 2-11 Kildare 0-12
By Dan Bannon at DEFY Páirc Mhuire, Ardee
Louth earned a third Allianz Football League Division Two win on the spin in Adree.
Well taken and timely goals from Tommy Durnin and Conor Grimes at the start and finish of the dominant first half propelled the impeccable hosts on the day.
With two games remaining, Mickey Harte’s side now have an outside chance of promotion while also easing relegation woes.
Kildare’s fourth league loss this campaign is a worrying spell. The Lilywhites struggled throughout and such was Louth’s control, they never led in the contest.
Midfielder Durnin came in for his first league start and repaid his manager’s faith with a ninth minute goal in front of a sold out faithful.
Durnin had perfected the impact sub role in recent weeks but took his chance from the off. Full of confidence Sam Mulroy extended Louth’s advantage before going off.
Paddy Woodgate also made an impression from the start for Kildare. The Raheen’s man along with Neil Flynn kept Kildare in faint touching distance.
However that distance was extended even further before the interval when Conor Grimes smashed through the Kildare cover to all but seal the tie. The Glen Emmets man made it 2-6 to 0-7 at half time.
With the winning habit in tow, Louth were confident in defending their lead and counter punching masterfully. Kildare on the other hand were guilty of some sloppy passages of play.
As a result, the second half played out like a game of cat and mouse. Replacement Barry Coffey did find the target but Ryan Burns and excellent Durnin struck back immediately.
In the laboured finish, Craig Lennon and Bevan Duffy came off the bench to secure the two points on offer for Louth with two measured scores.
With two games remaining, Louth are looking up while Kildare are staring down into a relegation battle.
Scorers for Louth: Tommy Durnin 1-2, Conor Grimes 1-0, Dáire McConnon 0-2 (1f, 1m), Sam Mulroy (2f) 0-2, Ryan Burns, Craig Lennon, Ciarán Downey, Bevan Duffy and Niall Sharkey 0-1 each.
Scorers for Kildare: Neil Flynn (2f) and Paddy Woodgate (2f) 0-3 each, Darragh Kirwan 0-2, Daniel Flynn, Barry Coffey, Jack Sargent and Ben McCormack 0-1 each.
Louth: James Califf; Niall Sharkey, Peter Lynch, Donal McKenny; Leonard Grey, Ciarán Murphy, Conall McKeever; Conor Early, Tommy Durnin; Ciarán Downey, Conor Grimes, Liam Jackson; Ryan Burns, Sam Mulroy, Dáire McConnon.
Subs: Bevan Duffy for Grimes (6-14), Criag Lennon for Mulroy (28), Conal McCaul for Burns (57), B Duffy for Jackson (62), Jay Hughes for McConnon (68).
Kildare: Mark Donnellan; Mick O’Grady, Shea Ryan, Jack Sargent; David Hyland, Kevin Flynn, Paddy McDermott; Kevin Feely, Kevin O’Callaghan; Eoin Doyle, Ben McCormack, Neil Flynn, Paddy Woodgate, Darragh Kirwan, Daniel Flynn.
Subs: Mick Joyce for McDermott (HT) Aaron Masterson for Feely (HT), Cian McMonagle for McCormack (48), Jack Robinson for Kirwan (55), Barry Coffey for N Flynn (63).
Referee: B Tiernan (Dublin)
Listen to reaction from Louth stars Conor Grimes and Conor Early with LMFMs Colm Corrigan.