Ulster Football Championship: Donegal 2-12 0-11 Fermanagh

Rory Gallagher says Donegal may appeal against Neil McGee red card
Ulster Championship quarter-final: Donegal 2-12 0-11 Fermanagh
Donegal scorers: C MacNiallais 2-1; P McBrearty 0-3; M O'Reilly 0-2: E McHugh 0-2; F McGlynn 0-1; M Murphy 0-1; M Murphy 0-1; C McFadden 0-1
Fermanagh scorers: T Corrigan 0-7; B Mulrone 0-1; S Quigley 0-1; E Donnelly 0-1; R Jones 0-1

The Ulster Football Championship finally came to life as two Odhran MacNiallais goals helped 14-man Donegal subdue Fermanagh in a fiery contest.

MacNiallais' first goal contributed to Donegal's early 1-5 lead to 0-3 lead.

Fermanagh cut the margin to two and had a chance to lead before the break after Neil McGee's red card but Mark Anthony McGinley saved Sean Quigley's penalty.

However, MacNiallais's second goal on 44 minutes put Donegal in firm control as Fermanagh's play became ragged.

MacNiallais was perhaps fortunate to register the second goal after a superb move with his left foot appearing to be in the small square after taking a pass from Martin O'Reilly.

Donegal's win sets up a provincial semi-final against holders Monaghan on 25 June as the teams involved in the last three Ulster deciders meet again.

Fermanagh, meanwhile, will face Wexford away in the qualifiers in two weeks.

Fermanagh boss Pete McGrath insists his side will regroup from defeat

Quigley penalty miss 'key moment'

Quigley's penalty miss was the key moment of the contest as Donegal championship debutant McGinley was able to make a comfortable save.

Donegal were leading 1-6 to 0-7 when the penalty was awarded after McGee had been red carded by Maurice Deegan for landing a retaliatory punch on Ruairi Corrigan after he had been fouled by the Fermanagh man.

The missed penalty was the final play of the opening half as Donegal remained ahead at the break.

Despite being a man down, Donegal took control in the second period as MacNiallais palmed to the net in the 44th minute following a sweeping move after a Fermanagh attack had broken down.

Key Fermanagh defender Che Cullen, who had bossed a struggling Michael Murphy in open play in the first half, was black carded moments later and Donegal added a further three unanswered points to put the outcome beyond doubt.

Ryan Jones had a goal chance with 10 minutes remaining which would have cut Donegal's lead to only four but his shot skimmed over the bar and with that, went Fermanagh's last chance to get back into the game.

Odhran MacNiallais says Donegal had to 'dig deep'

Man of the match - Odhran MacNiallais

MacNiallais' two goals came at crucial times - particularly his 44th-minute palmed effort - and he also picked a further point from play

Late choice Eoin McHugh also shone for Donegal as he kicked two scores while Frank McGlynn must also have been a contender for the man of the match award as he produced several charges into opposition territory following turnovers.

Martin O'Reilly was another strong-running presence for Rory Gallagher's side.

Managers' views

Donegal manager Rory Gallagher: "We were disappointed to lose Neil to a red card as he is one of our leaders.

"I felt we should have been more than two ahead at half-time but we dug ourselves out of it and now plan ahead for meeting Monaghan in the semi-finals."

Fermanagh manager Pete McGrath: "In the second half of the first half, we played exceptionally well. We had them on the back foot and we were playing with confidence and energy.

"But Donegal's second goal punctured the life out of us."

Donegal: MA McGinley; P McGrath, N McGee, E McGee; R McHugh, F McGlynn, A Thompson; R Kavanagh, E McHugh; L McLoone, M McElhinney, O MacNiallais; P McBrearty, M Murphy, M O'Reilly.

Fermanagh: C Snow; M Jones, C Cullen, M O'Brien; D McCusker, J McMahon, B Mulrone; E Donnelly, A Breen; P McCusker, R Jones, R O'Callaghan; R Corrigan, S Quigley, T Corrigan.


Leinster SFC quarter-finals

Meath 0-20 1-13 Louth

Westmeath 0-13 0-12 Offaly

Munster SFC semi-finals

Tipperary 3-15 2-16 Cork

Kerry 2-23 0-17 Clare

Connacht SFC semi-final

Roscommon 4-16 2-13 Sligo


Leinster SHC semi-final

Dublin 0-16 1-25 Kilkenny

Christy Ring Cup relegation/promotion play-off

Derry 1-14 1-21 Mayo

Nicky Rackard Cup relegation/promotion play-off

Fermanagh 0-12 7-19 Louth

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