National Football League: Sligo give a lesson to sorry Antrim
Antrim 1-11 Sligo 2-18: Sligo give a lesson to sorry Saffrons Antrim's hopes of staying in Division Three of the Allianz National Football League took a nosedive at Casement Park yesterday as they lost out to fellow strugglers Sligo.
The Yeats County men came, saw and conquered the Saffrons by 2-18 to 1-11.
This win eases Sligo's worries for the moment but it is still any two from Antrim, Sligo and Meath to take the plunge.
Sligo were just too powerful for an out-of-touch Antrim that never really looked like winning after the visitors stormed off to a shock 1-2 to 0-0 lead on seven minutes. Eamon O'Hara was the man who netted after he fielded a dropping centre from skipper Charles Harrison inside the full-back line.
Two free kicks by Paddy Cunningham and a point from Kevin Brady brought Antrim into the game. Mark Breheny (2), Adrian Marren and sub Alan Costello increased Sligo's lead.
Late first half replacement Kevin Niblock snatched a point. However Brian Curran swept the ball home for Sligo.
Sean Davey added a point but then a spectacular McCann goal was the springboard for a Saffrons revival.
On 16 minutes they hit 1-4 to 0-1 in reply but they failed to score again as the visitors tagged on an unanswered seven points with Breheny snatching three of them.
In injury time, Antrim's Kevin McGourty was given as straight red card for a foul on an opponent.
“We were outplayed from start to finish,” admitted Antrim team boss Liam Bradley.
“Mathematically, we can still stay up but, realistically, it looks as if we are going back down again.”
Antrim: S O'Neill, A Healy, C Brady, K O'Boyle, T Scullion, J Crozier, T O'Neill, K McGourty, S Burke, A Gallagher, K Brady (0-2), C Murray, P Cunningham (0-7, 5f), M Sweeney, B Herron. Subs: K Niblock (0-1) for Sweeney (33), T McCann (1-0) for Burke (33), A Douglas for O'Boyle (40), M Armstrong for Murray (62), R Johnston for O'Neill (64).
Sligo: J Farrell, C Harrison, N Ewing, R Donovan, K Cawley, P McGovern, T Taylor (0-1), S Gilmartin (0-1, a'45'), B Curran (1-2), M Breheny (0-6), S Davey (0-1), A Marren (0-4, 2f), E O'Hara (1-1), K Sweeney. Subs: A Costello (0-1) for Sweeney (16), B Maye (0-1) for Marren (71).
Referee: M Sludden (Tyrone).