Leitrim Versus London Match Report

Match Report – Leitrim v London 05/02/2023

London is a special place for me. In 1982  (41 years ago)  I was on the first Leitrim team to play London in London in the Connacht Championship. We won 1-13 to 0-4. In the intervening years London have improved dramatically and yesterday in London I was hugely impressed with London’s performance. Make no mistake about it this game went right to the wire and had the huge crowd on the edge of their seats in what was a championship atmosphere.

In the first half London were finding it easier to get into scoring positions and kicked a number of bad wides. Leitrim were struggling to break down the London defence and were more economical and the first half ended 0-6 to 0-3 in Leitrim’s favour undeservedly so.

The second half went one way then the other  and when Keith Beirne scored a goal it looked comfortable at 1-7 to 0-5. Another goal from Donal Wrynn followed and at 2-9 to 0-7 it looked done and dusted with fifteen minutes of normal time to go. When London had Henry Walsh red carded in the 56th minute it appeared Leitrim’s job was done. With London really piling on the pressure and scoring five points in a row the game exploded in the 65th minute when London scored a goal from a loose ball to bring the score to 2-10 to 1-13.  Three points in it as we approached the last five minutes it was squeaky bum time. Leitrim worked the ball up the field past the London defence line  and within the minute Tom Prior got the goal that would make the game safe notwithstanding a few anxious moments before the final whistle.

The match was a serious test for the Leitrim team. Travelling by bus, going through airports, getting buses when you arrive and trying to ensure it does not affect performance is really hard to do. That Leitrim won against a serious London team and will do wonders for the players confidence. Certainly London scoring five points  in a row with a man down at a crucial time in the match needs examination. London will win a few matches at home in London and could impact on the final league placings for a few teams.  The Leitrim team are a unit and their preparation is very professional under Andy and his management team. In all the circumstances it was a great victory.

Next up Wexford…..


Eamonn Duignan