Down show their clinical edge to leave Derry in a relegation scrap
Down ended Derry's Christy Ring hopes with a hard-fought 1-18 to 1-15 win at Owenbeg.
Down ended Derry's Christy Ring hopes with a hard-fought 1-18 to 1-15 win at Owenbeg.
Down manager Eamon Burns said he was proud of the spirited performance his men produced at McHale Park in Castlebar to force Mayo to dig deep for the win which ensured their survival in the top flight.
It's now six losses from six for Down in the Allianz National Football League after another tough day out in Cork on Sunday.
Armagh's fortunes at senior level may be at a low ebb but the county's U21 side illuminated the gloom with a flourish when they overwhelmed Down in the Ulster Championship quarter-final at Pairc Esler, Newry last night.
The agony goes on for Derry in Division 2A of the Allianz Hurling League. Tom McLean's side suffered a fourth defeat yesterday at the hands of London, which looks certain to consign his men to relegation.
The tentacles of relegation may have tightened their grip on Down after their 1-15 to 1-07 defeat to Dublin, but not to the extent that all is already lost.
We could have seen the last of Benny Coulter in a Down shirt after manager Eamonn Burns confirmed he had withdrawn from the inter-county panel following their fourth league defeat of the season.
Down manager Eamonn Burns has been left in no doubt as to what his priority is as he contemplates Sunday's must-win league game against Roscommon.
The spectre of relegation from Division One of the Allianz Football League now looms large over a Down side that hit rock-bottom in terms of commitment, endeavour and pride in this clinical execution at the hands of Kerry.
Down just managed to hold off the feisty challenge of Armagh to capture an early brace of points in Division 2B of the Allianz Hurling League at the Athletic Grounds yesterday.
With just two rounds of the Allianz Football League completed, it could be said that the competition is still in its infancy.
Excuse us while we perform the knee-jerk of all knee-jerks, but it's not too early to say that Down's season - in both league and Championship - is a write-off.
Shell-shocked Down manager Eamonn Burns took almost three-quarters of an hour to emerge from the dressing room and talk to reporters. After this 17-point mauling, he looked as if he had needed every minute of it and he wasn't in any particular mood for talking.
It was scores galore at Pairc Esler as Down crushed St Mary's in the Dr McKenna Cup with a scintillating second-half display to pick up their first win under Eamonn Burns.
The fare on offer may have been some distance removed from Allianz League expectations and even further away from Championship standards but Fermanagh manager Peter McGrath was happy to embrace the positives as his side took a decisive step towards the Bank of Ireland Dr McKenna Cup semi-final at Down's expense yesterday.
Down manager Eamonn Burns is stepping up the drive to acquire a settled side before his team embark on what promises to be a hugely challenging campaign in Division One of the Allianz League that embraces attractive home matches against Kerry, Dublin and Donegal.
Eamonn Burns will hardly have a moment to digest his first Dr McKenna Cup as the new Down manager before he is thrown into what might be the Mournemen's highest-ever profile league campaign in Division One.
Down icon Benny Coulter has hit out strongly at the "rampant negativity" which he claims has engulfed the county of late.
Down are set to name their new senior football manager this week, and although the identity has been kept top secret, Under-21 manager Frank Dawson has emerged as the front-runner.
A concerted drive to restore credibility within Down football is gathering momentum - and that's before a new county team boss has been appointed.
The Down Senior Football Championship may have reached the semi-final stage but it is understood that the county board will not be rushed into naming Jim McCorry's successor.
The Down County Board intends to fill the vacancy created by the resignation of football team boss Jim McCorry as soon as possible.
The idea of an 'own-goal' isn't a familiar concept in the GAA, but there can be no more fitting description for the actions of the Down county board last week.
Shane Mulholland, a player who gave Down superb service at senior level in the past, described his sacking as county minor boss as "a real kick in the teeth".
Down senior football manager Jim McCorry survived a county board vote last night over his future as boss of the Mourne county, with the vote at 22-20 in favour of keeping him on, with a number abstentions.
After Brian McIver's resignation at Derry, the Championship managerial fall-out could be further highlighted tonight when the Down board meet to consider the position of Jim McCorry, who has been under considerable fire since his side were banished from the qualifiers by Wexford.
Down hurling manager Michael Johnston believes his team will be afforded a great opportunity to strike a blow on behalf of the sport in Ulster when they meet Antrim in the senior provincial final at Owenbeg tomorrow.
Down manager Jim McCorry admitted he was gutted after Saturday's All-Ireland Senior Football 1B Qualifier loss to Wexford at the victors' home ground.
There will be a replay of the 2013 Ulster Hurling Championship final after Down defeated Derry by five points at Owenbeg yesterday.
Former Down ace Benny Coulter is urging manager Jim McCorry to resurrect the inter-county careers of a number of players in a bid to end what has now become a 21-year Ulster title famine.
It wasn't just in the sphere of football that Derry lapped up the fruits of success yesterday.
Even though the pattern of the game and the key performance indicators fell in their favour, Derry were forced into an almost insufferable sweat to fall over the line against a Down side that nipped at their heels all the way here at Celtic Park.
Yet again, the mystery of the team scorned after a red card occurred in the first minute of the second half, with Down defender Conaill McGovern dismissed after an incident involving Derry's Enda Lynn.
Seldom has the old adage goals win games been more pronounced than in this lively Ulster Minor Football Championship quarter-final tie at Celtic Park, Derry yesterday.
At the end of an absorbing contest at Owenbeg, Derry emerged victorious by five points in a Christy Ring Cup semi-final that was level on six occasions in the first half and four times more by the 48th minute before the Oak Leafs pulled away with a barrage of points.
He may have called time on his inter-county career but Down legend Benny Coulter is preparing to strut his stuff again at a venue which holds a host of memories for him.
A mystifying red card might have contributed to Down's defeat to Roscommon in the Division Two league final, but for the day that was in it, was merely another freak occurrence.
Down manager Jim McCorry refused to play the victim card after defeat in the Division Two league final, when he could have easily blamed it on Maurice Deegan's red card for Brendan McArdle in the first half.
The notion that Down are not physically powerful enough to win honours will be put to the test at Croke Park this weekend.
Winning over what he calls "the doubters" will be a priority for Jim McCorry's rejuvenated Down side when they confront Roscommon in the Allianz Football League Division Two final at Croke Park on Sunday.
The cross-fertilisation between gaelic football and rugby is slowly but surely gathering more momentum.
The man who skippered Down to their last Ulster title in 1994 believes the Mournemen's forthcoming Allianz Football League Division Two final against Roscommon could prove a barometer for even better things ahead.
Down manager Jim McCorry, whose side have just made the quantum leap into Division One, has lost no time in firing a curt broadside at "the negative reporting" of Gaelic football.
It's onwards and upwards for Down. Jim McCorry's side duly cemented their place in Division One yesterday and even if it was not achieved in the most emphatic manner, the rich promise of perhaps even better things to come has suddenly enveloped a county starved of...
Down manager Jim McCorry has reason to be thankful for the versatility that Paul Devlin has displayed to date in the Allianz Football League.
From the hurly-burly of Australian Rules Football to the high-intensity of the Allianz League. That's the transformation that Caolan Mooney has made in recent weeks and on Sunday the Down ace will take another significant step in his career path when he makes a home start in...
What should have been the proverbial canter to promotion for Down has suddenly turned into a white-knuckle ride.
Down's Division Two promotion hopes where dealt a big blow on Saturday night as they were comfortably beaten by Mick O'Dowd's Meath in tricky conditions at Pairc Esler.
Jack Regan went from villain to hero in the space of a week as Meath booked their place in the Division 2B final with a fine showing at Trim.
This time last year Derry were free-wheeling into the Allianz Football League final against Dublin.
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