Dublin defeat Meath by 12 points to advance into first ever Leinster U20 final

Tom Gray’s side set-up a showdown with Kildare in the decider.

Image: Laszlo Geczo/INPHO

Dublin 4-16

Meath 2-10

Conor McKenna reports from Páirc Tailteann

DUBLIN CRUISED TO victory in tonight’s EirGrid Leinster U20 semi-final, after a comprehensive 12 point victory over a disappointing Meath outfit, in what was a one-sided affair played out in Páirc Tailteann.

This game was effectively decided in the opening periods of both halves, with Dublin scoring a goal within twenty seconds of the throw-in on two occasions.

Dublin opted to go with a complex, traditional, man to man formation and it paid dividends to them in the opening period as James Doran found the net in the first play, after an excellent set up from James Madden.

Tom Keane was a thorn in the Meath defence throughout scoring seven points, with goalkeeper David O’Hanlon Cluxton-esque with his kickout’s, allowing Dublin to build from the back.

Tom Gray’s charges had a dream start to the game, when full forward James Doran found the net in the first play of the game, finishing to the back of the net after being set up by James Madden.

Two further scores from James Doran and Ross McGarry stretched Dublin’s advantage to five points and Brian Farrell’s side were really up against it even at this early stage.

Meath did come back into the game well though and were awarded a penalty just before half time, after Nathan Nolan appeared to foot-block Jason Scully as we was kicking the ball and Frank O’Reilly made no mistake with the resulting spot-kick to leave just three points between the sides at the interval.

Meath ought to have been cautious from the second half throw in, but remarkably Dublin found the net again, with Doran again the hero for Dublin, finding the net 15 seconds after the restart.

Further goals from Ross McGarry and Karl Lynch Bessett killed the game as a contest, with a wonder goal from Jordan Morris no more than consolation, as Dublin eased to a 12 point victory.

Dublin now face Kildare in what will be an inaugural final at this level and it would take a brave punter to back against Dublin winning the first ever Leinster U20 championship.

Scorers for Dublin: J Doran 2-1, R McGarry 1-4 (1f), T Keane 0-7 (2f), K Lynch Bissett 1-0, S Bugler 0-2, C Howley and D O’Brien 0-1 each.

Scorers for Meath: J Morris 1-4 (3f), F O’Reilly 1-2 (1f, 1 pen), J Conlon, S Walsh, A Kealy and E Devine 0-1 each.


16. Adam McDermott (Dunshaughlin)

2. Robbie Clarke (Skryne)
3. Conor Harnan (Moynalvey)
4. Kieran Slavin (Meath Hill)

10. Eoin Smyth (Skyrne)
6. Eanna O’Kelly Lynch (Wolfe Tones)
7. James Cassidy (Moynalty)

11. Ethan Devine (Na Fianna)
9. Adam Murphy (Moynalvey)

24. Sean Reilly (Moylagh)
8. Darragh Campion (Skryne)
5. Jason Scully (Oldcastle)

12. Frank O’Reilly (Carn na Ross)
13. James Conlon (St. Colmcilles)
23. Jordan Morris (Nobber)

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14. Shane Walsh (Na Fianna) for Reilly (h-t)
19. Sean Ryan (St. Peter’s Dunboyne) for Cassidy (37)
Adam Kealy (Dunshaughlin) for O’Reilly (54)
15. Shane McDonnell (St. Michael’s) for Slavin (57)
21. Ben McGowan (Ratoath) for Devine (57)
17. Brian O’Reilly (Moynalvey) for Smyth (60)


1. David O’Hanlon (Na Fianna)

2. Nathan Nolan (Kilmacud Crokes)
3. Nathan Doran (Clontarf)
4. Ciaran Smith (Lucan Sarsfields)

5. Kieran Kennedy (Ballyboden St. Enda’s)
6. Neil Matthews (Erins Isle)
19. Eoin O’Dea (Na Fianna)

8. Donal Ryan (Na Fianna)
15. Sean Bugler (St. Oliver Plunketts ER).

11. James Madden (Ballyboden St. Enda’s)
14. James Doran (Na Fianna)
9. Cormac Howley (Round Tower’s Lusk)

12. Ross McGarry (Ballyboden St. Enda’s)
13. Dan O’Brien (Kilmacud Crokes)
10. Tom Keane (Naomh Olaf)


7. Simon King (St. Judes) for Kennedy (B/C, 20)
17. Glen McNamara (Raheny) for Nolan (44)
22. Karl Lynch Bissett (Naomh Mearnog) for Howley (49)
20. James Holland (Ballyboden St. Enda’s for Doran (53)
24. Conor Hynes (St. Peregrines) for Keane (57)
21. Eoghan Fitzpatrick (Ballinteer St. John’s) for Ryan (57)

Referee: Brendan Cawley (Kildare).

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About the author:

Conor McKenna

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