Football

Ulster Club SFC final - how the Kilcoo players rated

Conor Laverty chases Glen's Danny Tallon during yesterday's Ulster final at the Athletic Grounds. Picture by Philip Walsh
Conor Laverty chases Glen's Danny Tallon during yesterday's Ulster final at the Athletic Grounds. Picture by Philip Walsh Conor Laverty chases Glen's Danny Tallon during yesterday's Ulster final at the Athletic Grounds. Picture by Philip Walsh

Niall Kane: Was brilliant at finding ways around the Glen press last year, but struggled yesterday as Kilcoo were hemmed in time and again. 5.5

Niall Branagan: Found Alex Doherty a handful, though couldn’t take much blame for the Glen man’s late goal, with Branagan left exposed as Kilcoo pushed up. 6

Ryan McEvoy: An unfortunate stumble almost allowed Glen in for an early goal, but was his usual assured self thereafter. Held Tallon scoreless from play and pushed forward as the Magpies chased the game. 6.5

Aaron Branagan: Made a brilliant burst forward to bag Kilcoo’s first half goal and added a classy score after the break. Good battle with Jack Doherty. 7

Ceilum Doherty: Handed the thankless task of picking up his namesake, Ethan Doherty - and even though the Glen man drifted in and out, it was his lightning bursts that really ignited the Derry champions at critical moments. Also saw a second half goal chance well saved by Bradley. 6

Darryl Branagan: Found McGuckian hard to get to grips with, and was left in the Glen man’s wake after a brilliant bit of ingenuity late on. Always looking to find gaps going forward, though the Derry men shut down the space well. 6

Miceal Rooney: Carried the fight for Kilcoo, making some brilliant interceptions and setting the Magpies on the front foot as they chased a slow start. 7

Aaron Morgan: Tried, and at times succeeded, in stopping Emmet Bradley dominating the skies but Glen were able to push home their advantage. 6

Dylan Ward: Played on the edge but got in Glass’s face enough to curtail his influence, and it was his lay-off that led to Branagan’s goal. A lingering hamstring injury forced him off at half-time. Was also on a yellow card. 6.5

Eugene Branagan: Such an important figure in their All-Ireland win, yet peripheral yesterday. Made a good block from Convery and won a free, but Kilcoo needed more. 5.5

Ryan Johnston: Been such a dynamic figure for Kilcoo this year, but denied the space to wreak havoc in Armagh. Mishit shot led to second half goal opportunity for Ceilum Doherty. 6

Shealan Johnston: His brilliant diagonal pass led to brother Jerome winning a penalty, but got little change from Flanagan otherwise. 6

Paul Devlin: Shown a 17th minute black card for pulling down Warnock, and a nice pass to Dylan Ward opened the door for Aaron Branagan’s goal. But the penalty miss before half-time will haunt him. 5.5

Conor Laverty: Roamed around trying to get Kilcoo going, but to no avail in the end. Since making his Down SFC bow against Warrenpoint in 2002, Laverty has missed just one championship game for Kilcoo - a knee injury ruling him out of a 2006 clash with RGU Downpatrick. Given his commitments with the Down seniors and U20s, could this be the last championship outing for the 37-year-old? Time will tell. 6

Jerome Johnston: Put in hard yards tracking Dougan up and down the field, but stuck to the task. Got there just ahead of Dougan to win Kilcoo’s penalty, which was missed by Devlin, and converted a first half mark. 6.5

Substitutes

Anthony Morgan: Replaced Dylan Ward at half-time and, although not as physical as Ward, stuck to Glass like glue. 6.5

Sean Og McCusker: Brought on for Eugene Branagan, but shown a black card five minutes later. 5.5