/ GAA

Dublin make light work of Monaghan

Updated: Saturday, 09 Aug 2014 20:45 | Comments

Diarmuid Connolly slotted home Dublin's first goal
Diarmuid Connolly slotted home Dublin's first goal

Dublin 2-22 Monaghan 0-11

All-Ireland champions Dublin charged into another football semi-final with a 17-point win over Monaghan at Croke Park.

Diarmuid Connolly and Bernard Brogan drilled home goals in the space of three minutes, and the Dubs led by 2-08 to 0-05 at half-time.

Brogan finished with 1-06 as Jim Gavin's side turned in another attacking master-class to set up a last four clash with Donegal.

Dublin had ten players on the score-sheet, while Conor McManus top-scored for Monaghan with 1-07.

In front of a crowd of 72,440, another dominant display by an awesone Dublin side simply blew their outclassed opponents away.

Brogan swept over a couple of early frees to launch Dublin’s challenge, but they struggled to break down a solid and hard-working Farney defence in which Colin Walshe was excelling as Brogan’s marker.

When they got the opportunity, the Monaghan half back line pressed forward, and it was Vinny Corey who won the free that Kieran Hughes converted to tie it up at 0-02 each after 15 minutes.

Diarmuid Connolly edged the champions back in front, and it wasn’t until the 20th minute that the game produced its first point from play. It was well worth waiting for, Conor McManus swinging over a magnificent point from wide on the right.

Eogan O’Gara’s fisted effort to the net was ruled out on a technicality, but they did grab a goal in the 25th minute when Connolly cut in from the left to pick his spot with a precise finish to the bottom of Rory Beggan’s net.

Three minutes later, they had a second goal. James McCarthy’s run from deep saw him break two tackles before slipping the pass to Bernard Brogan, who slid low past Beggan.

It was a cruel double hammer blow for a Monaghan side that had come through a punishing extra-time Qualifier just a week earlier.

The legs were becoming increasingly heavy as they struggled to contain a Dublin side bursting with confidence and energy.

Alan Brogan, Jonny Cooper and Connolly tagged on points, and they went ten clear when pace, power and movement created the opening for Eoghan O’Gara to slot over a point.

Monaghan did pull back scores from Dick Clerkin and Beggan, from a ’45, but at the break, they trailed by 2-08 to 0-05.

Space began to open up, and they were ruthlessly exploited by a hungry Dublin side, who swept over a flurry of scores in the earlystages of the second half to put the game beyond their opponents’ reach.

Kevin McManamon and Paul Flynn got in on the act with points to reward their work-rate, and quick hands carved the opening for O’Gara to hit his second.

Two more from Alan Brogan opened up a 13 points lead with 40 minutes on the clock, and they could have had a third goal, but substitute Cormac Costello dragged his shot wide, and Connolly also drilled a shot wrong side of a post.

McManus and Clerkin pulled back scores for a Monaghan side driven by pride to keep working.

Connolly could have had a hat-trick, another bad miss giving Stephen Cluxton the opportunity to slot over a ’45, making it 2-17 to 0-10 with 10 minutes to play.

Dean Rock came off the bench to hit a couple of points, and Brogan brought his tally to 1-07 before the rout was brought to a merciful end by referee Marty Duffy.

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