'It was a mistake on the management's part'

November 19, 2018

Crossmaglen manager Donal Murtagh. ©INPHO/Declan Roughan.

Crossmaglen manager Donal Murtagh admitted that he wasn't aware that Johnny Hanratty had already been on a yellow card before he received a second early in the second half of the Armagh champions' Ulster club SFC semi-final defeat to Gaoth Dobhair.

The dismissal was a huge blow to Cross' chances of reaching the provincial final, with Murtagh conceding that it could have been avoided if the management had known Hanratty was booked earlier.

"We didn't know he was on a yellow card or we probably would have had him off," he said in the Irish News.

"That's a mistake on the management's behalf but (after the sending off) we gave ourselves a mountain to climb, but we went back at them again and then they got a lucky goal.

"The ball came back off the post into (Kevin) Cassidy's hands and he stuck it in the net. Then we had another mountain to climb but, in fairness to them, we couldn't be more proud of them in the second half.

"It was 14 versus 15 against wind and at times we were 7, 8, 9 points down and they fought to the bitter end."

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