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IT Sun, Jun 3

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  • 13:50
    It’s week three and we’re back at Croke Park for the first time this year. The Dubs are in action in the Championship again, the first involvement since their triumph last year. Louth are their opponents and the wee county could run into big problems given that the majority of last year’s All-Ireland winning team will be lining out at headquarters today. Will the Dubs drub Louth? Stay tuned.
  • 14:01
    Before that of course, Croke Park plays host to Longford’s Leinster quarter final tie against Wexford.  Longford staged a remarkable comeback against Laois to get here but don’t expect a red-hot atmosphere at a practically empty Croke Park. That’s about as likely as Pat Spillane praising players for their handpassing ability.

    In Ulster Down travel to Enniskillen to take on Fermangh who of course are now managed by one of Tyrone’s most famous sons, Peter Canavan. Down have injuries but they should have enough to overcome the defeated Division Four finalists Fermanagh.  Then again, Down do love to disappoint in their provincial championship so a shock is not out of the questions here.

    In Ruislip, London may fancy their chances of beating Leitrim which goes to show just how many young Irish people are leaving these shores. Galway take on Westmeath in the Leinster hurling Championship. I’m going to stick my neck out here and say that I think Galway may just win that match.

    The good weather may have left us but let’s hope that the players on show can bring a little light into our lives on this grey Sunday afternoon.  I know, I know -  I’d rather have good weather too.
  • 14:01
    Leinster Senior Football Championship
    Wexford v Longford (2pm)
    Dublin v Louth  (4.30pm)
    Connacht Senior Football Championship
    London v Leitrim (3pm)
    Ulster Senior Football Championship
    Fermanagh v Down (3.30pm)
    Leinster Senior Hurling Championship
    Westmeath v Galway (3.30pm)
  • 14:04
    1 min – Longford are one point up. It was a kicked point. Pat Spillane will be relieved.  Longford 0-1 Wexford 0-0
  • 14:06
    Shall we keep a handpass watch going this afternoon? Anytime we see excessive handpassing we’ll all shout ‘SPILLANE!’ to discourage the players from ever thinking about doing anything so foolhardy again.
  • 14:07
    5 mins - Wexford are level  by the by but you already knew and if you didn’t you do now. Wexford 0-1 Longford 0-1
  • 14:09
    6 mins – Adrian Flynn with a point Zinedine Zidane would’ve been proud of.  Wexford 0-2 Longford 0-1
  • 14:12
    Brian Kavanagh hit a monster of a point to equalise. It’s been scrappy since. Wexford 0-2  Longford 0-2
  • 14:14
    12 mins - Adrian Flynn puts Wexford in front. wexford lead by a point
  • 14:15
    Honestly, I know it’s every player’s dream to play in Croke Park but would you want to play in this ghost stadium? Doesn’t it detract from the experience or are these the musings of a crazy man?
  • 14:18
    16 mins – It’s Wexford 0-3 Kavanagh 0-3 – He’s got all of Longford’s points today
  • 14:21

    16 mins – McCormack takes the scoring burden off Kavanagh with a super long ranger. Longford are in front. Longford 0-4 Wexford 0-3

  • 14:25
    21 mins – As George Hamilton said, “Danger here.” Unlike the scenario George described then the ball didn’t hit the net on this occasion thanks to some good defensive work from Wexford.
  • 14:27
    24 mins -Niall Mulligan – it’s one thing to not get a goal but it’s another to not even put it over the bar from there. Should’ve been a score..... he says sitting in his ivory tower.
  • 14:29
    25 mins – Well, it’s close at least. 0-4 apiece but it’s not really exciting. I’m hoping that a commentator’s curse will burst this game into life. I’m nice like that.
  • 14:29
    Pádraig You have it listed there that Fermanagh will play Ulster at 3.30pm
  • 14:30
    Sorry that should've read Fermanagh v Kings of Ulster. Not that I'm biased*

    *I am biased. Down of course play Fermanagh in Brewster Park

  • 14:32
    30 mins – GOAL – Paul Bardon with a well taken penalty. It’s Longford 1-4 Wexford 0-5.
  • 14:33
    31 mins – Kavanagh is playing like a man possessed. Funny though, in The Exorcist I don’t remember the little girl who was possessed having a special talent for football.
  • 14:34
    32 mins – Bradley reduces the arrears to two points again. Wexford 0-6 Longford 1-5
  • 14:36
    Michael McCaul In unrelated news, Fenerbache say they have signed Dirk Kuyt
  • 14:38
    Thanks for that Michael but unless Fenerbache are a little known GAA club team then I'm afraid your post may belong to a different liveblog. Would Dirk make a good GAA player?
  • 14:38
    35 mins - Super score and Wexford are within one point of Longford now. Wexford 0-7 Longford 1-5
  • 14:39
    Half-time – Wexford 0-7 Longford 1-6. A point on the stroke of half-time puts Longford two points up at the break.
  • 14:40
    Who’s Brolly going to make enemies with this week?
  • 14:43
    Flynn has scored three points from the half-back line for Wexford. He’s been impressive but Kavanagh has gone one better for Longford by kicking four points from play.
  • 14:43
    Negativity knows no bounds in the RTE studio
  • 14:46
    It was a definite penalty. Any Wexford supporters blinded by their allegiance willing to say otherwise?
  • 14:50
    Down minors are beating their Fermanagh counterparts in Brewster Park. It’s 1-9 to 1-5.
  • 14:54
    ‘Are Galway known as the Banner County?’ is RTE’s competition question.  A question they may as well have asked instead is ‘Do you have google?’
  • 14:56
    I know I jest but I’m beginning to seriously think Pat Spillane has tourette’s syndrome and his tic is ‘handpassing.’
  • 14:57
    We’re underway again at Croker. Who’s going to win?
  • 14:59
    37 mins - Redmond Barry with a point as cool as his name. Longford 1-6 Wexford 0-8
  • 15:01
    39 mins – Longford simply refuse to close Flynn down when he’s in scoring positions. His fourth point of the day. Wexford 0-9 Longford 1-6. We’re even.
  • 15:04

    41 mins – Adrian Flynn, a half-back has scored five points in 41 minutes. Wow! Wexford 0-10 Longford 1-6

  • 15:06
    44 mins - GOAL! Paul Bardon with a rocket of a goal. I thought he took about 9,246,178 steps on his way to goal but a great finish all the same.
  • 15:07
    45 mins – Longford 2-6 Wexford 0-10. I don’t mean to patronise anyone(I do really) but it means Longford lead by two points
  • 15:08
    45 mins – David Bardon denied a goal by a brilliant Anthony Masterson save.  Mulligan points in the end for Longford.  Longford 2-7 Wexford 0-10
  • 15:10
    45 mins –Longford’s nickname is ‘ The Slashers.’ That has to be the best nickname in the country. They could start an American Football franchise if this GAA lark doesn’t work out for them.
  • 15:11
    49 mins – Wexford get one back from a long-range free. They still trail by two points
  • 15:14
    51 mins – Redmond Barry scores another point. I make no bones about the fact that I like writing Redmond Barry’s name. Redmond Barry. Wexford 0-12 Longford 2-7
  • 15:17
    55 mins – Sean McCormack puts two between them after a terrible Brosnan free. It’s Longford 2-8 Wexford 0-12
  • 15:19
    I love when the referee gets in the way of the play. When he gets in the way of your team though it's infuriating.
  • 15:21
    58 mins – Lyng with a great score. There’s one point between them heading into the last 10 minutes.
  • 15:25
    Short on quality but there’s plenty of……..can’t think of anything nice to say……..endeavour. Yes, let’s go with endeavour.
  • 15:27
    65 mins –Brosnan with a superb point close to the sideline. We’re level. Wexford 0-14 Longford 2-8
  • 15:28
    Is this match heading for the replay that no one wants?
  • 15:30
    68 mins - Kavanagh couldn’t miss in the first half. He can’t score in the second.
  • 15:31
    69 mins - Rob Tierney, the corner back could have scored the point that takes Wexford into a Leinster semi-final. Great score under pressure from a defender. It’s Wexford 0-15 Longford 2-08
  • 15:33
    71 mins – Longford get an easy free which will give them the draw they deserve
  • 15:34
    72 mins - McCormack puts it over. It's the last kick of the game. A replay it is. It's Longford 2-9 Wexford 0-15
  • 15:36
    It was close at the end but the quality wasn’t great. Here’s hoping the 3.30 throw-ins can produce something special.
  • 15:38
    35 mins gone in Ruislip – London 1-4 Leitrim 0-5
  • 15:43
    Man in green sees red card  – Daryl Keenan sees red for an off-the-ball altercation.
  • 15:45
    H T– London 1-5 Leitrim 0-5. Are the Exiles coming in out of the footballing wilderness?
  • 15:46
    So it’s taken 12 minutes for the first score in the Down v Fermanagh match. Not exactly a great advert for Ulster football. Donal O’Hare, a late replacement for Arthur McConville scored it.
  • 15:47
    Wouldn’t it be great for London to win the football on this Jubilee weekend?
     *Waits for an onslaught of abuse*
  • 15:50
    18 mins – Westmeath 0-1 Galway 0-6. No surprises in Mullingar. No surprises in the hurling match being played in Mullingar either.
  • 15:55
    18 mins – GOAL. Who needs Benny Coulter? (Down desperately do by the way) but Donal O’Hare has scored a goal on his championship debut. He had previously pointed to open the scoring. It’s Down 1-2 Fermanagh 0-1
  • 15:57
    It could be a long afternoon for Westmeath. Galway now lead 1-9 to 0-2.
  • 15:59
    The replay between Wexford and Longford should be played in Laois. Now, there’s a depressing sentence.
  • 16:01
    Pat Spillane went on Wikipedia to find out how many points he scored in Championship football. I don’t know why I find this so funny.
  • 16:03
    Now the main point of discussion. No, not Dublin Louth but how TV3's coverage compares to RTE's? Darragh O'Se should be interesting.
  • 16:05
    32 mins – Uncharacteristically Down are making light work of opponents in Ulster. It’s now 1-5 to 0-1.
  • 16:06
    TV3 will have the Dublin game in a few moments. Who knew that a few moments equated to 26 minutes?
  • 16:08
    Wouldn’t it be great if the TV3 panel adopted the view that kick passing is ruining the game?
  • 16:09
    Louth need Rob Kearney to stand any chance, don’t they?
  • 16:10
    HT- Galway 1-13 Westmeath 0-4. I can feel the comeback coming. It’s definitely happening. No doubt about it.
  • 16:11
    The Cockneys are still leading. It’s London 1-07 0-08 Leitrim innit mate?!
  • 16:16
    Michael Dara McAuley is out. Bastick and Fennell line out in the middle of the park for the Dubs.
  • 16:18
    HT- Down 1-6 Fermanagh 0-3. Yes, I am feeling suitably smug as a Down fan.
  • 16:22
    It’s going to be a pretty poor attendance at Croke Park today whatever way the GAA look at it.
  • 16:25
    Look I know we don’t expect Louth to win but the latest odds of 9/1 are crazy surely?
  • 16:28
    Rumours of Darren Clarke’s demise have been greatly exaggerated. He starts for Louth despite a late injury scare.
  • 16:29
    Down and Fermanagh have started the second half.  Conor Quigley has been introduced for Fermanagh.
  • 16:31
    Galway 2-12 Westmeath 0-4. David Burke with Galway's second goal. Please let it end.
  • 16:31
    And we’re off in Croke Park.
  • 16:34
    FT - London 1-08 Leitrim 0-12.  The prospects of a jubilant London team on this jubilee weekend have been dashed by Leitrim.
  • 16:35
    3 mins -Darren Clarke (not the golfer but that'd be funny) puts Louth in front but Cluxton equalises.  Louth 0-1 Dublin 0-1
  • 16:36
    Is this one of those matches where Diarmuid Connolly will score non-stop? He tends to do that sometimes
  • 16:38
    Cluxton with a great save to deny Adrian Reid. That man Cluxton also denies Clarke from the resulting 45. Louth fans must already hate Dublin’s man o’steel, Stephen Cluxton.

  • 16:40
    8 mins – Paul Flynn puts Dublin 0-3 to 0-1 in front. Sloppy from Louth.
  • 16:42
    GOAL! Fermanagh have a goal which could make things interesting. Damien Kelly is the man to find the net. Down still lead 1-8 to 1-4.
  • 16:44
    I know what you’re thinking – 'What’s the score in the Galway v Westmeath hurling match?' It’s tight. Galway 4-14 Westmeath 2-07. Double scores.
  • 16:45
    Louth are making this easy for Dublin. Conceding frees, hitting wides and giving Bernard Brogan easy chances. They’re setting it up for a miraculous second-half comeback. Born entertainers.
  • 16:47
    14 mins - Bernard Brogan’s rubbish, isn’t he? He's just made it Dublin 0-5 Louth 0-1
  • 16:50
    17 mins - The only competitive element to this game so far is happening between Diarmuid Connolly and Bernard Brogan and it’s all about who can get the most scores for the Dubs – Dublin 0-6 Louth 0-1
  • 16:52
    Brogan’s showboating (hitting a shot with his weak foot) is a bit much this early isn’t it? Fitting that he missed really.
  • 16:55
    It’s pretty turgid stuff now in Croker. I blame the weather….and Louth
  • 16:56
    Down have pulled away thanks to a Conor Laverty goal. Down 2-10 Fermanagh 1-05
  • 16:57
    25 mins Cluxton has scored as many points as Louth have. Dublin 0-7 Louth 0-2
  • 16:58
    Dublin now lead by six points. Remember I said Louth were 9/1 to win this. There was a reason for that.
  • 17:01
    FT - Galway 5-19 Westmeath  4-12. To be fair to Westmeath they put a bit of respectability on the score-line
  • 17:02
    29 mins – Louth finally score a third point. Not that it’ll matter.  Dublin 0-8 Louth 0-3
  • 17:03
    31 mins – Paul Flynn with an outrageous score hugging the touchline. That is superb. Dublin 0-9 Louth 0-3
  • 17:07
    33 mins – GOAL! Who else but Bernard Brogan gets the goal. He received it from his brother Alan and dispatched it with his usual panache. Cullen puts another point over immediately after the goal. This game is over. Dublin 1-10 Louth 0-3
  • 17:09
    36 mins – GOAL! Dublin didn’t even want to score that. They missed twice before Bernard Brogan put it in eventually. It’s Dublin 2-11 Louth 0-3
  • 17:10
    HT – Dublin 2-11 Louth 0-3
  • 17:10
    FT- Down 2-10 Fermanagh 1-8
  • 17:13
    There’s no pleasing some people. I just got this message from a Down-supporting friend after they beat Fermanagh with five points to spare – ‘Don’t let the score-line fool you, Down have been very wasteful and sloppy.’ The power of positive thinking eh?
  • 17:14
    Who’s going to say, ‘You can only beat what’s in front of you’ first on the panel?
  • 17:16
    Louth have had more possession?!! How can that be possible?
  • 17:19
    You know how some people say something of a pretty poor standard is lousy? Well, from now on that may be changed to Louthy
  • 17:22
    All of the other games are over so we’ll be concentrating fully on the second-half of the Dublin v Louth game. I can hardly contain my excitement.
  • 17:23
    There are over 30,000 people at Croke Park this afternoon wishing they hadn’t come to Croke Park this afternoon.
  • 17:24
    Pa Shweeney Jaysis, I felt a little something roll down the inside of me leg in the last few minutes of the Longford game.
  • 17:25
    That's a lovely image Pa Shweeney. Remember the toilet roll for the replay!
  • 17:27
    Remember, you can read the very best analysis of today’s games in tomorrow’s Irish Times.
  • 17:28
    My prediction for the second-half? Minimal injury time at the end of the game.
  • 17:30
    35 mins – Craig Dias scores immediately after coming on as a substitute. Not a bad way to make your Championship debut
  • 17:31
    Longford and Wexford replay is in O'Connor Park, Tullamore next Sunday apparently
  • 17:32
    38 mins - Bernard Brogan has now scored 2-3. Dublin 2-13 Louth 0-3
  • 17:35
    40 mins – Alan Brogan scores. All six Dublin forwards have scored. Louth’s half-time team talk must have been inspirational. I don’t care what people say about sarcasm being the lowest form of wit. Dublin 2-14 Louth 0-3
  • 17:37
    You know it’s bad when the referee gives you pity frees. Come on Louth, you’re only 15 points behind.
  • 17:39
    44 mins – You heard that right. Louth’s first point from play comes in the 45th minute.
  • 17:41
    Kevin McManamon has been superb today for the Dubs.
  • 17:42
    48 mins - Alan Brogan decides to go for a run and score, probably just to keep himself awake really.  Dublin 2-16 Louth 0-6
  • 17:43
    I cursed Kevin McManamon and I apologise. Bad miss.
  • 17:44
    Dublin bring on Eoghan O’Gara – how is that fair on Louth?  He’ll be looking to prove a point now. The Louth defenders must be close to tears. I know I am.
  • 17:46
    51 mins - Darren Clarke with a great point from a side-line ball. That is superb. Dublin 2-16 Louth 0-7
  • 17:46
    Jack Two overwhelming performances from both the Dublin footballers and hurlers this weekend. However, it doesn't look like anything can be read into them.
  • 17:48
    I'd say that's a fair comment Jack. They've steam-rolled the opposition in both games and they'll need to play better teams before we can gauge how far they can go this year.
  • 17:50
    55 mins – McManamon should really have scored a goal there and had this game been in any way competitive he probably would have. As it is he was happy to fist over. Dublin 2-18 Louth 0-8
  • 17:52
    56 mins – Dias gets his second point of the game. He’s looked very comfortable since his introduction. 
  • 17:54
    Another Dublin debutant – Cooper gets 12 minutes of action.
  • 17:55
    Diarmuid Connolly unluckily hits the post. Did you hear that? Dublin are unlucky to only be leading by 18 points. That’s the gulf in class between these sides.
  • 17:56
    Michael Fitzsimons adds the only bit of colour to an insipid second half – he gets a yellow card.
  • 17:57
    63 mins - Ray Finnegan with a fantastic chip off the ground. Maybe Louth should be playing soccer. Dublin 2-20 Louth 0-10
  • 17:58
    Who’s man of the match then? Kevin McManamon for me. What say you?
  • 18:00
    66 mins – Louth try to muster a goal but can’t. It sums up their afternoon.
  • 18:01
    66 mins – Bastick scores a point when he could have had a goal. I’ve found myself saying that of a lot of Dublin players this afternoon. Dublin 2-21 Louth 0-11
  • 18:04
    Seriously Louth, how did you not score a goal there? So bad it’s almost funny. Almost.
  • 18:07
    FT- Dublin 2-22 Louth 0-12
  • 18:08
    The torture is at an end for all you Louth fans out there. It was a professional performance from a disciplined Dublin team. It completes an underwhelming day of action across the country.
  • 18:28
    Sometimes life is beautiful. Sometimes life is grim. Louth fans, today has not been your finest hour. It was grim indeed but it can’t get much worse.
    It’s true that Dublin may not know just how good their team is on the basis of today’s game but there is certainly every reason for true blues to be optimistic.
    Longford and Wexford fans are still unsure about whether it has been a good or bad day but the replay next week should make that clearer for both sets of fans.
    Down will be relieved. Life without Benny Coulter was not as bad as had been feared. Down’s victory over Fermanagh was comfortable rather than exhilarating. Monaghan will present more of a challenge in the Ulster semi-final.
    Galway need a challenge after overcoming Westmeath without ever being tested.
    Leitrim were tested to their limit but were eventually able to spoil the party on jubilee weekend in London.
    It completed what ultimately was an underwhelming day of action across the country. Sometimes life is beautiful. Sometimes life is grim. Here’s hoping for a day of beauty next week. Bring your beautiful self along again next Sunday for more of the same.