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Kerry Win All Ireland Minor Title 2014 2014-09-21 20:26:00



Kerry 0-17 Donegal 1-10

Kerry won their first All-Ireland Minor Football Championship title since 1994 when they beat Donegal 0-17 to 1-10 in Sunday's final at Croke Park.
Jack O’Connor’s team appeared to be cruising towards the crown when a converted long-range free from goalkeeper Shane Ryan put them six points up with ten to play.
Donegal, managed by Declan Bonner, hit back with a slick goal from Jamie Brennan and they got the gap down to a point.
But the Kingdom steadied the ship and eventually won by four, hitting three unanswered points in the final three minutes of normal time.
Whatever the result between the same two counties in the senior final, this was a hugely significant result.
Kerry have struggled to land All-Irelands at underage level since the 90s.
O’Connor, who led the Kingdom to three Sam Maguire wins in the last decade, was drafted in to resuscitate their hopes.
And he did so with an excellent team who were good value for their win, which moves them to top of the minor role of honour on 12 titles, one ahead of Dublin.
An excellent first half petered out a somewhat in the minutes before the break, with both teams hitting needless wides.
Early in the game both pushed hard for goals when they may have been better off opting for the safety of points.
But it helped to make for an exciting opening and Kerry would have been happy to get back into the dressing-rooms two points up at the break, leading 0-8 to 0-6.
Donegal set up some good attacking moves and the free count in the first half was 16-five in their favour, suggesting that they were putting Kerry under pressure.
This was a game with plenty of famous names on the field and, just as they did in their respective semi-finals, they sparkled
Killian Spillane, son of Kerry All-Ireland winner Tom, popped over three points before the break.
Donegal’s Stephen McBrearty, brother of senior star Patrick, popped over two and on both occasions showed great strength to shrug off tackles.
The Ulster champions started with captain Niall Harley on the bench, replaced in the middle by Eoghan ‘Ban’ Gallagher.
Wing-back Cian Mulligan got one of the scores of the minor championship when he sold a dummy off his right boot and then shot over with his left.
But despite this, Kerry were able to take their scores with a little more ease and this is why they went in leading at half-time.
Kerry turned the screw after the break and in the third quarter they limited Donegal to just two points. A long free from keeper Shane Ryan put them six up, 0-14 to 0-08, to give them what looked like to be a match-winning cushion.
Credit to Donegal though, they kept plugging away and Jamie Brennan dragged them back into the game with a well-worked goal with six minutes to play.
He added a free and Harley converted from play to cut the defect to just a single point.
They battered at he door in the next few minutes, but were unable to knock it down and Kerry picked them off on the break.
Kerry: S Ryan (0-01, 1f), B O Beaglaoich, T O’Sullivan (0-01), B Sugrue, A Barry, C Coffey, B O’Sullivan (0-02), M O’Connor, M Burns (0-03), B Rayel, M Flaherty (0-01), K Spillane (0-5, 2f), L Kearney, T O Se (0-1).
Subs: L Carey (0-01) for C Coffey, J Kiely (0-01) for L Kearney, R Wharton for B Sugrue, S O’Sullivan for T O Se, I Parker for B Rayel.
See photos from game here