Carrickedmond clubman Paul McGuire, the manager of the Longford U-20 football squad pictured at Glennon Brothers Pearse Park on Tuesday evening for the game against Leitrim. Pic: Declan Gilmore
Goals from wing back Shane Farrell and midfielder Gerard Flynn in the early stages of the second half swung the issue in favour of the Longford U-20 side who came from six points down to beat Leitrim in the opening round of the National Football League at Glennon Brothers Pearse Park on Tuesday evening.
Longford . . . 3-14 Leitrim . . . 2-11
The sides were all square (3-8 to 2-11) with 53 minutes gone on the clock but Longford produced a very strong finish to score six points in a row through substitute Jordan Martin, Aidan McGuire, Flynn, Farrell, Oran Kenny (free) and Dario Ciligiano to emerge victorious against Leitrim.
With two other games in the group stage against Sligo (away on Saturday next) and Fermanagh (home on Saturday June 8), the new competition for the Philly McGuinness Cup is ideal preparation for the championship with Longford taking on Dublin in the Leinster quarter-final at Pearse Park on Tuesday July 2.
LONGFORD: Patrick Murray (Carrickedmond); Kian Gilmore (Rathcline, 0-1), Niall Farrelly (Killoe Emmet Og), Gavin Hughes (Killoe Emmet Og); Eoghan McCormack (Carrickedmond), PJ Masterson (Abbeylara), Shane Farrell (Kenagh, 1-1); Daire O'Brien (Longford Slashers), Gerard Flynn (Longford Slashers, 1-1); Dario Ciligiano (Mostrim, 0-1), Robbie O'Connell (Longford Slashers), Eamon Keogh (Killoe Emmet Og); Oran Kenny (Rathcline, 0-4, two frees), Aidan McGuire (Carrickedmond, 0-4, one free), Jordan Shiels (St Mary's Granard, 1-1).
Subs:- Packie Molloy (Clonguish) for E Keogh (17 mins); Jordan Martin (St Mary's Granard, 0-1) for R 0'Connell (48 mins); Edward Smyth (St Mary's Granard) for G Hughes (two minutes into stoppage time).
LEITRIM: Yann Le Guen; Evan Harkin, Conor O'Dwyer, Sean Harkin; Ciaran Cullen (0-2), Paul Keaney, Mark Keegan; Aaron Hoare (0-1), Dylan Maguire; Riordan O'Rourke, Jack Gilheaney, Mark Diffley; Tom Prior (1-2), David O'Connell (0-5, four frees), Diarmuid Kellegher (1-1, goal from penalty).
Subs:- Colin Moran for D Maguire (46 mins); Oisin Bohan for M Diffley (50 mins); Jack Barnes for D Kellegher (60 mins).
Referee: Patrick McTiernan (Roscommon).