Ulster SFC Semi-Final:
Monaghan 1-12 Tyrone 0-14
Monaghan recorded their first SFC victory over Tyrone since 1988 after a drama-filled afternoon at Clones on Sunday.
The defending Ulster champions, who had lost all five previous championship encounters against Mickey Harte’s team in the last decade, hung on as Tyrone scored the last three points of the game to reduce the deficit to a point.
Tyrone goalkeeper Niall Morgan missed a free in the last minute of normal time which could have forced a replay, and instead it is Monaghan who go forward to play Armagh in an Ulster semi-final on June 28.
Tyrone were furious at referee Eddie Kinsella’s decision to play only two minutes of injury-time after an action-packed second half which saw three black cards shown in the last 11 minutes.
Darren McCurry (Tyrone) and Monaghan pair Dermot Malone and Darren Hughes all received black cards late on.
Monaghan led by 0-8 to 0-7 at half time having also missed a penalty and an open goal in the opening period. The sides were level six times during that time, with Monaghan taking the lead for the first time through Conor McManus’ free after 26 minutes.
Kieran Hughes missed an easy goal chance in the fourth minute when Tyrone goalkeeper Niall Morgan soloed out of goal and then hand-passed the ball straight to him, but the full-forward kicked it wide with the net gaping. Hughes was again involved in a crucial moment when referee Eddie Kinsella awarded a penalty against Tyrone defender Ronan McNabb for a foul on Dessie Mone.
Hughes’ penalty crashed off the upright, with Morgan beaten, and Tyrone cleared the danger. Mattie Donnelly was impressive for the Red Hands and scored three points from play while Kieran Hughes also kicked a brace of points for last year’s Ulster champions.
Dermot Malone grabbed the decisive score of the game with the only goal after 41 minutes. Dick Clerkin’s crossfield kick found Darren Hughes, who cut inside and fed Malone who came inside and hit a low finish to the corner of the net.
Fintan Kelly’s second point of the game stretched Monaghan’s lead to 1-10 to 0-8 after 47 minutes, but Tyrone fought back with scores from Mattie Donnelly and McCurry.
Monaghan were hanging on at the death but deservedly booked their place in the Ulster semi-finals.
Scorers for Monaghan: C McManus 0-6 (6f), D Malone 1-0, K Hughes 0-2, F Kelly 0-2, R Beggan 0-2 (1f, one ’45’)
Scorers for Tyrone: D McCurry 0-4 (2f), Mattie Donnelly 0-3, S Cavanagh 0-2, N Morgan 0-2 (1f, one ’45’), C McAliskey 0-2 (1f), C McGinley 0-1
MONAGHAN: R Beggan; C Walshe, D Wylie, F Kelly; D Mone, V Corey, K Duffy; D Clerkin, D Hughes, R Wylie, C McGuinness, P McKenna; D Malone, K Hughes, C McManus. Subs: P Donaghy for McKenna (HT), C Boyle for Duffy (HT), S Gallogly for McGuinness (53), K O’Connell for Malone (BC, 60), P Finlay for Boyle (60), J McCarron for D Hughes (BC, 66)
TYRONE: N Morgan; A McCrory, J McMahon, R McNamee; R McNabb, Mattie Donnelly, P Harte; C Cavanagh, C Grugan; M Penrose, S Cavanagh, C McGinley; D McCurry, S O’Neill, R O’Neill. Subs: C Gormley for McNabb (HT), K Coney for Grugan (39), C McAliskey for R O’Neill (39), Mark Donnelly for McGinley (51), PJ Lavery for McCurry (BC, 59)
REFEREE: Eddie Kinsella (Laois)