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Donegal crowned Ulster Champions with Fermanagh victory

Fermanagh 0-12 Donegal 2-18

By Adam McKendry ·

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Fermanagh fans before the match in Clones. Pic: INPHO/Tommy Dickson

Donegal are the 2018 Ulster champions as they strolled to a 2-18 0-12 win over Fermanagh at St Tiernach’s Park in Clones.

In glorious summer sunshine, Declan Bonner’s side made it four provincial titles in eight years as goals from Eoghan Ban Gallagher and Ryan McHugh handed them the win.

Indeed, the writing was on the wall early when Donegal dominated the early scoring, despite Sean Quigley’s free opening proceedings.

And when man of the match Gallagher palmed home a pass across the face of goal from McHugh, it already looked like an insurmountable lead.

That was only further exacerbated when McHugh turned provider to scorer, the talismanic forward evading several tackles to hammer the ball past Patrick Cadden.

At the break the Donegal men led by eight points, and things only got worse for Fermanagh after the restart as they failed to shut down their opponents’ lethal attack.

They got somewhat fortunate when Paddy McGrath had a goal chalked off for being inside the square just after the restart, before Ryan Jones was sent off for a second yellow card.

From there it was nothing more than a procession as Donegal dropped their intensity to coast to the end, keeping the scoreboard ticking over, as Fermanagh tired.

Replacement Seamus Quigley did score the point of the game with a few minutes to go, but it was nowhere near enough for the Erne county as Donegal enjoyed the run-in to the end and their ninth Ulster title.

How the game unfolded

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Fermanagh fans before the match in Clones. Pic: INPHO/Tommy Dickson
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Ulster GAA Senior Football Championship Final, St. Tiernach's Park, Clones, Co. Donegal's Michael Murphy lifts the cup. Pic ©INPHO/James Crombie
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Ulster GAA Senior Football Championship Final, St. Tiernach's Park, Clones, Co. Monaghan 24/6/2018 Fermanagh vs Donegal Fermanagh's James McFadden and Barry Mulroe block Ciaran Thompson of Donegal Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/James Crombie
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Ulster GAA Senior Football Championship Final, St. Tiernach's Park, Clones, Co. Monaghan 24/6/2018 Fermanagh vs Donegal A lose dog on the field Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/James Crombie
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Donegal's Michael Murphy lifts the cup. Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/James Crombie
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Ulster GAA Senior Football Championship Final, St. Tiernach's Park, Clones, Co. Monaghan 24/6/2018 Fermanagh vs Donegal Donegal's Ryan McHugh celebrates scoring a goal with Patrick McBrearty Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/James Crombie
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Ulster GAA Senior Football Championship Final, St. Tiernach's Park, Clones, Co. Monaghan 24/6/2018 Fermanagh vs Donegal Fermanagh's goalkeeper Patrick Cadden dejected after Ryan McHugh of Donegal scored his sides second goal Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/James Crombie
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Ulster GAA Senior Football Championship Final, St. Tiernach's Park, Clones, Co. Monaghan 24/6/2018 Fermanagh vs Donegal Donegal fans Nicole McHugh, Annie Keeney and Irene Boyle Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Tommy Dickson
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Ulster GAA Senior Football Championship Final, St. Tiernach's Park, Clones, Co. Monaghan 24/6/2018 Fermanagh vs Donegal Fans before the match in Clones Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Tommy Dickson
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Ulster GAA Senior Football Championship Final, St. Tiernach's Park, Clones, Co. Monaghan 24/6/2018 Fermanagh vs Donegal Fans before the match in Clones Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Tommy Dickson
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Primary 1 teachers and pupils at Holy Trinity Primary School in Enniskillen are ready for Fermanagh to take on Donegal this weekend in the Ulster Final. All the school wore Fermanagh colours to school day on Friday in support of their home county. Picture: Ronan McGrade
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Robbie Fitzpatrick and his sons Matteo and Lorenzo are looking forward to watching Fermanagh take on Donegal in Clones on Sunday. Picture: Ronan McGrade
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Shane, Cadhla and Julie Connolly are hoping for a Fermanagh win over Donegal in the Ulster Final. Picture: Ronan McGrade.
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Fermanagh supporters are in fine voice at Enniskillen Castle ahead of Sunday's Ulster Final clash with Donegal. Back from left, Aoife and Sean Maguire, Brandon Horan, Julie Connolly, Robbie Fitzpatrick, Patrick Keaney, Gaby Maguire and Dana Keaney. Front, Padraig Lunny, Shane and Cadhla Connolly, Matteo and Lorenzo Fitzpatrick, Erin Keaney and Niamh Maguire. Picture: Ronan McGrade
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Bronagh Martin, Derrylin, cheering on Fermanagh in the Ulster Final.
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Bronagh Martin, Derrylin, a big Fermanagh Fan.
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Cheering on Fermanagh on Sunday are from left, Agnes Moffitt, Margaret Hanna, Alice Howel and Albert Nixon.
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Pauleen and Jodie Taggart, Ederney, cheering on Fermanagh on Sunday.
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Laura Maguire, cheering on the Fermanagh men in Green on Sunday.
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Oisin and Eimear Gunn, Enniskillen, cheering on Fermanagh in the Ulster Final.