Donegal 1-11 Monaghan 0-14

Donegal 1-11 Monaghan 0-14
Donegal and defending champions Monaghan will have to meet again after finishing level on 1-11 to 0-14 in their Ulster SFC semi-final at Kingspan Breffni Park.

Conor McManus came to the Farney County’s rescue with three late frees, after their 14-man opponents had pushed ahead with an Odhran MacNiallais goal on 55 minutes.

In a gripping encounter, the outcome was always in the balance, and another tight contest has restored the reputation of the northern provincial series as the toughest of them all, with both semi-finals now requiring replays.

Karl Lacey had the Donegal men ahead inside 12 seconds, and with Michael Murphy taking up a more advanced role than usual, they appeared to be set up to attack.

Murphy doubled the lead, before Shane Carey got the Farney County off the mark in the tenth minute.

Darren Hughes released Carey on goal, but Marty O’Reilly got back to make a vital tackle, and set his side back on the attack, with Murphy making it 0-03 to 0-01 from a free.

Monaghan danger man Conor McManus was unsurprisingly double-teamed by marker Paddy McGrath and auxiliary defender Anthony Thompson, who popped up to make his presence felt wherever the threat arose.

But McManus was unerringly accurate from placed balls, converting three to give his side the lead for the first time in the 24th minute.

At the other end, Paddy McBrearty suddenly exploded into the game after a quiet opening,

hitting three points in the space of five minutes, two from frees, to nudge Donegal back in front.

 Francis Mooney at Breffni Park

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