Éire Óg 2-8 Rathvilly 1-8

Éire Óg deservedly claimed their 27th Carlow senior football championship title, and their first since 2012, with a one-goal win over Rathvilly in an incident-packed replayed final at Netwatch Cullen Park.

Rathvilly had two players red carded and one issued with a black card before converting one of two late penalties awarded in their favour.

 

The game, a bad-tempered affair, produced mediocre fare for the attendance of 2,500.

Éire Óg were never trailing after they hit the front in the fifth minute, when left half-forward Eoghan Ruth had a simple task of finding the Rathvilly net after Darragh O'Brien's astute pass from near the end line.

In a fractious game in which both sides set up defensively, there was little in the way of quality football, with referee David Hickey issuing a plethora of cards of all hue.

Rathvilly lost centre-back Wayne O'Donoghue to a black card on 21 minutes as they trailed 1-4 to 0-5 at half time. Early second-half points from Jordan Morrissey and captain Séan Gannon doubled the Éire Óg advantage.

Rathvilly were in deep trouble when Alan Kelly was red carded on 43 minutes and, almost immediately Jordan Morrissey, a county minor in 2017, found the Rathvilly net to put his side into a commanding 2-6 to 0-6 lead.

JJ Smith's penalty hit the post and went safe before Gary Dempsey slotted a second spot kick with the last action of the game, by which stage Rathvilly wing back Jeffrey O'Donoghue had received a second yellow card.

The five-time Leinster Club champions can now plan for an away tie in the Leinster Club Championship against Mullinalaghta of Longford.

Scorers: Éire Óg: D O'Brien 0-04, all frees, J Morrissey 1-01, E Ruth 1-00, S Gannon 0-02, D Hayden 0-01. Rathvilly: G Dempsey 1-05, 1-00 pen, 0-04 frees, K Doyle, D Molloy, J J Smith (45) 0-01 each.

Éire Óg: R Moore; F O'Toole, M Fitzgerald, B Kavanagh; J Lowry, P McElligott, R Dunphy; S Gannon, K Chatton; S Rea, J Morrissey, E Ruth; M Furey, D Hayden, D O'Brien.

Subs: E Kelly for O'Toole (35); C Mullins for Dunphy (41); M Ware for Rea (51); C Blake for Morrissey (58); N Quinlan for Hayden (63).

Rathvilly: R Molloy; BJ Molloy, C O'Brien, T Bolger; J O'Donoghue, W O'Donoghue, JB Leonard; Brendan Murphy, K Doyle; A Kelly, E Finnegan, D Molloy; Brian Murphy, G Dempsey, J J Smith.

Subs: J Moore for W O'Donoghue (black card) (23); R Ryan for J B Leonard (54); D Murphy for Doyle (54); C Byrne for D Molloy.

Referee: D Hickey (Fenagh).