Fermanagh produce strong finish to see off Wexford

&nbsp;Fermanagh manger Pete McGrath was pleased with how his side finished strongly after a disapointing first half<br />Picture by Colm O'Reilly
 Fermanagh manger Pete McGrath was pleased with how his side finished strongly after a disapointing first half
Picture by Colm O'Reilly
 Fermanagh manger Pete McGrath was pleased with how his side finished strongly after a disapointing first half
Picture by Colm O'Reilly

All-Ireland SFC qualifier: Wexford 1-11 0-19 Fermanagh

FERMANAGH manger Pete McGrath wasn’t happy with his side’s first half display against Wexford on Sunday, but hailed the final 25 minutes as their best football of the season.

After a sloppy first half at the end of which they led by a point having been wind assisted, Fermanagh delivered a splendid finish to the game.

“We need improvement.,” said McGrath.

“Our first half display was indifferent to say the least but I think once we upped the tempo of the game in the closing 25 minutes we dominated.

“At half-time we knew we were in a battle and this became more evident when we fell a point in arrears early in the second half having led by a point at half-time.

“We didn’t take our chances in the first half, conceded a goal, and made life difficult for ourselves.

“Our display in the closing 25 minutes was out best of the season.

“Now we have to go on, improve on that, and take it into the next round. We kicked 19 wides, missed out on a couple of goal chances, so it was satisfying in the end.”

With Wexford getting off to a sluggish start it was Fermanagh who took full advantage racing into a 0-4 to 0-1 lead inside the opening eight minutes.

The visitors had the wherewithal up front to keep on testing the home side’s full-back line.

Midfielder Eoin Donnelly picked out Quigley with a delightful ball inside, but the full-forward saw his rising shot hit the crossbar with Tomas Corrigan pointing from the rebound leaving his side leading 0-5 to 0-2 after 11 minutes.

It was not until the 20th minute that Wexford had their opening score from play through John Tubritt. Four minutes later the game was turned on its head.

Simon Donohoe played a great ball through to Tubritt on the wing, who cut inside before placing a return pass to Donohoe who shot low across ’keeper Chris Snow giving Wexford a 1-5 to 0-6 lead.

The sides continued to trade points but it was an Eoin Donnelly point in injurytime that helped Fermanagh to a 0-10 to 1-6 interval lead. When Wexford went a point ahead with efforts from Tubritt and Brosnan within five minutes of the restart, it looked as if they were about to assume control.

But Fermanagh still mounted dangerous attacks as Ryan Jones saw an effort rebound off the crossbar before a Tomas Corrigan 41st minute free had the sides level, 0-11 to 1-8. But it was after midfielder Richard O’Callaghan was black carded on 45 minutes that Fermanagh took control.

Centre-forward Ryan Jones dropped back into midfield and assumed total control of the sector.

With Corrigan kicking some wonderful points both from play and frees, the Ernemen put the foot down and eased home.


Wexford: A Masterson; J Rossiter, N Rossiter, J Wadding; B Malone, S Byrne, S Donohoe (1-0); C Kehoe, D Waters; K O’Grady (0-1), A Flynn, E Nolan; D Shanley (0-4 frees), B Brosnan (0-2), J Tubritt (0-3). Subs: PJ Banville for Byrne (46), K Butler for Flynn (50), S Roche (0-1) for Shanley (58), R Tierney for O’Grady (62), P Murphy for Masterson (62). Referee: E Kinsella (Laois).

Fermanagh: C Snow; M Jones, C Cullen, M O’Brien; D McCusker, J McMahon, A Breen (0-2); E Donnelly (0-2), R O’Callaghan; B Mulrone (0-1), R Jones, P McCusker; R Corrigan (0-1), S Quigley (0-4, 0-2 frees), T Corrigan (0-9, 0-5 frees). Subs: C McManus for M Jones (h-t), J Duffy for McCusker (58), D Kelly for D McCusker (72). Black card: R O’Callaghan (45) replaced by C Flaherty