It was a top of the table clash in Croke Park this afternoon as Dublin and Kildare faced off.
Which side could preserve their 100% record?
13.23 – Hello and welcome along to Croke Park for this afternoon’s showdown between Dublin and Kildare in Division 1 of the Allianz Football League.
13.25 – It’s bitterly cold at Croke Park with a small crowd gathered so far to watch today’s curtain-raiser. Kildare are facing Wicklow in Division 2A of the Allianz Hurling League with the teams tied at 1-11 apiece so far.
13.29 – Here’s the Dublin team that is named to start this afternoon.
13.31 – Here’s the Kildare team that is named for today’s game.
13.39 – And here are the substitutes for today’s game.
13.42 – They may be Leinster rivals but Dublin and Kildare have not crossed paths too frequently in recent times in the league arena. You have to go back to 1999 for their last meeting when Dublin triumphed by 1-17 to 2-8 in a quarter-final clash. Current Dublin boss Jim Gavin was in action that day and shot 0-3.
13.48 – Dublin’s U21 players Jack McCaffrey and Ciaran Kilkenny will be seeking to bounce back today from last Wednesday’s shock defeat against Longford. Shane Carthy is another member of that team is included in today’s squad.
13.50 – Of course both sides enter this game on the back of a rich vein of form. Dublin have picked up wins over Cork, Kerry and Mayo so far. Kildare have been victorious against Donegal, Cork and Kerry in their three matches to date. A victory for either today and they are in a strong position to reach the knockout stages.
Cavan’s Joe McQuillan is the referee for today’s match. Both sides are currently out on the pitch putting the finishing touches to their preparations.
13.58 – There is a small crowd gathered in Croke Park for this one on what is a freezing afternoon for football.
14.03 – Looks like Dublin are going to line out as selected while Cathal McNally is in for Kildare in a late change as he replaces Niall Kelly in their attack.
14.04 – Dublin 0-1 Kildare 0-0: 2 mins – First blood to Dublin and no surprise that it’s Bernard Brogan, who has been in prolific form this spring, who notches the point from a free.
14.07 – One other Kildare change to notify you of as Fionn Dowling has started instead of Daniel Flynn.
14.09 – Kildare 0-2 Dublin 0-1: 6 mins – Kildare edge in front courtesy of points by Eoghan O’Flaherty and Seanie Johnston.
14.11 – Wides on both sides from Dublin’s Paddy Andrews and Kildare’s Eoghan O’Flaherty.
14.15 – Kildare 0-3 Dublin 0-1: 12 mins – Kildare stretch their lead after O’Flaherty is held back and John Doyle shows the composure to curl over the free from the left wing.
14.16 – Kildare 0-3 Dublin 0-2: 13 mins – Scrappy stuff so far with Dublin just after pointing through Bernard Brogan from a free after Mikey Conway clattered into the back of Ciaran Kilkenny.
14.17 – Kildare 0-3 Dublin 0-3: 15 mins – Dublin draw level with Paddy Andrews kicking over off his left after a forceful break forward by Darren Daly from defence.
14.21 – Dublin 0-5 Kildare 0-3: 17 mins – The classiest point of the game to date comes from Diarmuid Connolly as he slices over a beautiful point with his left foot. Then Brogan follows it up by popping over a close-range free for Dublin after he was found himself. The Dubs are getting on top.
14.23 – Dublin 0-6 Kildare 0-3: 20 mins – Ciaran Kilkenny has had a few wayward efforts so far today but he’s in target now in front of goal with a fine point.
14.24 – Goal for Kildare from Seanie Johnston!
14.26 – Kildare 1-4 Dublin 0-7: 23 mins – Plenty scoring action to report. Seanie Johnston hits the first goal of the game as a long ball pumped into Tomas O’Connor breaks kindly to the former Cavan player and he scrambles the ball to the net. After that Diarmuid Connolly from play and Mikey Conway from a free traded points.
14.29 – Kildare 1-5 Dublin 0-7: 25 mins – Kildare edge in front through Emmet Bolton from play but Bernard Brogan has the chance to level it only for his shot to cannon off the upright.
14.32 – Kildare make the first change of the game with Morgan O’Flaherty coming in for Mikey Conway.
14.35 – Kildare 1-6 Dublin 0-9: 32 mins – Brian Flanagan edged Kildare ahead by two points before Dublin fought back with points from Darren Daly and Paddy Andrews to draw level.
14.36 – Dublin 0-10 Kildare 1-6: 34 mins – Dublin are narrowly in front after Bernard Brogan pointed a free.
14.39 – Dublin 0-11 Kildare 1-6: 35 mins – A bizarre point by Ciaran Kilkenny. He shot for a point but the ball held up in the air and dropped short yet the Castleknock player rushed in to field the possession himself and kick over off his left. Dubs are ahead by two.
14.40 – That’s how it stands at the break with Dublin ahead by two points. We’ll be back shortly with the second-half action.
14.57 – The Arctic conditions have certainly contributed to a small crowd in Croke Park as we get set for the start of the second-half. The weather is deteriorating further now with hailstones making an appearance.
15.00 – Dublin 0-15 Kildare 1-6: 38 mins – Dublin have opened brightly in the second-half and it is substitute Kevin McManamon, introduced at the interval, who has shone with a brace of points. Paul Flynn and Jack McCaffrey have just tapped over further points to increase their lead.
15.02 – Substitutions for Dublin at half-time with McManamon replacing Ciaran Reddin while Denis Bastick is in at midfield for Michael Darragh MacAuley. Kildare have just brought on Daryl Flynn for Cathal McNally.
The attendance has been confirmed as 15,389 supporters have braved the cold in Croke Park to witness this game.
15.05 – Daniel Flynn is brought on to try to inject some life into Kildare’s flagging challenge as Brian Flanagan makes way.
15.08 – Dublin 0-16 Kildare 1-6: 45 mins – Dublin are really starting to pull clear here. Bernard Brogan has released Ciaran Kilkenny who bared down on goal and smashed the ball over the bar.
15.10 – Dublin 1-17 Kildare 1-6: 47 mins – Now it’s really looking ominous for Kildare. Jack McCaffrey has notched their first goal of the game with a beautifully composed finish to the corner of the net after a flowing team move up the pitch. Then Paddy Andrews swung over a lovely point to increase their advantage to 11 points.
15.13 – Dublin 1-18 Kildare 1-6: 50 mins – Ciaran Kilkenny has just popped over another point for Dublin with Eamonn Callaghan onto the Kildare team for Padraig O’Neill.
15.15 – Now Dublin are bringing Bryan Cullen into the game with Ciaran Kilkenny the player replaced. We’re at the midway mark of the second-half.
15.17 – It’s been a poor second-half in the attacking sense for Kildare with Eamonn Callaghan’s effort just moments ago tailing wide. After a promising first-half performance, this game has slipped away from them as Dublin have taken control.
15.19 – Dublin bring on Chris Guckian for Jack McCaffrey while Kildare replace Tomas O’Connor with Ronan Sweeney.
15.20 – Dublin 1-18 Kildare 1-7: 57 mins – Kildare have finally got off the mark in the second-half courtesy of a Seanie Johnston but it doesn’t look like it’s going to change the outcome of this game.
15.23 – Dublin 2-18 Kildare 1-7: 60 mins – And that’s game, set and match for Dublin. Bernard Brogan gets clear of the Kildare defence after a long ball is pumped in and dispatches his shot to the net. Philly Ryan is on for Jim Gavin’s team instead of Declan O’Mahony.
15.26 – Dublin 2-19 Kildare 1-7: 64 mins – It’s one-way traffic now with Brogan clipping over another point off his left for Dublin. Several supporters have headed for the exit with the points definitely heading the way of the capital outfit here.
15.29 – Dublin 2-20 Kildare 1-7: 67 mins – Philly Ryan gets in on the scoring act for Dublin as he splits the posts with a fine shot from the left wing.
15.31 – Dublin 2-20 Kildare 2-7: 69 mins – A rare moment of second-half cheer for Kildare as Emmett Bolton rounds off a team move involving Seanie Johnston and Eoghan O’Flaherty when he rolls a left-footed shot to the net. A consolation effort for the Lilywhites.
15.34 – FULL-TIME: Dublin 2-20 Kildare 2-7: And that’s how it finishes in Croke Park. A comprehensive victory in the end for Dublin as they produced a formidable second-half showing.
15.39 – Kildare’s 100% record in the league draws to an end while Dublin maintain their perfect start to life in Division 1 of this year’s Allianz Football League. We’ll be back later with analysis and reaction, thanks for joining us this afternoon.