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Fermamagh score late to get share of spoils with Offaly

It would be a little harsh to blame the players for what was at times an insipid encounter at Brewster Park. There was nothing to play for of any real substance.

Fermamagh made five changes from the team that beat Wexford, by nine points to secure their division three status and a winless Offaly knew they were heading for division four.

There were, however, passages of good football and in the last 90 seconds Fermanagh conjured up 1-1 to secure a share of the spoils. Their goal was provided by Barry Owens who predictably soared highest to flick home to the net among a clutch of players.

For Offaly Niall McNamee had given the Fermanagh defence a torrid time, particularly in the first half. The Rhode man ended the game with 0-08 to his name which included five first half points from play.

Inspired by McNamee, Offaly seemed to be pulling away from Fermanagh in the first half but Ryan Jones crashed through the middle to slam to the net to keep the home side in front.

And the same player repeated the trick in the second half to put the Erne men three up but they failed to hold on to their lead as Offaly came back and had goals of their own through Niall Geraghty and a David Hanlon penalty.

That looked to be the crucial score of the game but Fermanagh and Owens had other ideas.

Fermanagh: C Snow, M O'Brien, C Cullen, A Breen, D McCusker 0-1, L Cullen, B Mulrone, E Donnelly, C Jones 0-2, R Corrigan, R Jones 2-4 (0-2f), P McCusker, E Courtney 0-2f, B Owens1-1, S McElrone. Subs: R McCluskey for McElrone (47), R Ormsby for Courtney (64), N Shannon for D McCusker (68).

Yellow cards: E Donnelly (47), B Mulrone (65)

Offaly: A Mulhall, D Brady, D Hanlon 1-0p, N Geraghty 1-0, N Darby, J Moloney, M Brazil, R Allen 0-1, N Smith, P Sullivan 0-1, A Sullivan, E Carroll 0-1, J Maher 0-2f, N McNamee 0-08 (0-3f), P Cunningham.

Subs: J McPadden for Maloney (11) (BC), G Guilfoyle for Sullivan (62), S Sullivan for Allen (64).

Black card : Offaly J Moloney.

Belfast Telegraph