No victory speech for Clifford as Cavan drop down the Leagues
The Allianz League has seen more memorable finales...
In an ending that summed up just how much the 2020 Leagues were diluted by the coronavirus pandemic, victorious Kerry captain David Clifford didn't even bother with a victory speech. A quick trophy lift and he was off, off to stretch down alongside his teammates with their preparations for a Munster championship semi-final against Cork in a fortnight's time, deemed much more important.
Kerry are the 2020 Allianz Football League Division 1 Champions!! pic.twitter.com/BnhhvZTGyY
— The GAA (@officialgaa) October 24, 2020
Compare it for example, with the wild and euphoric Mayo celebrations when they collected the same trophy last year and what you have are worlds apart. But last year, we must remember, was a very different time.
It was hollow, it was emotionless and in many ways, it was a fair reflection of this calendar year so far.
Kerry certainly have bigger fish to fry but they looked irresistible at times against a deflated Donegal side in Austin Stack Park, Tralee. The inside forward duo of Clifford and Brosnan caused serious problems for the Donegal defence, with the pair doing the damage in a 2-18 to 0-10 win.
You wouldn't have to go too far to find some wild celebrations however, with the Laois footballers pulling off a miraculous late escape in Brewster Park. With Mike Quirke's charges looking destined for the drop down to Division three when they trailed by five points with five minutes left, they ripped up the script with 3-3 without reply to win by seven.
This late cameo came at Cavan's expense, with the Breffni county losing to Roscommon and subsequently dropping down to Division Three football alongside Fermanagh, who already had their fate sealed. Roscommon meanwhile, landed their third Division Two League title in the last six years with an Enda Smith goal inspiring Anthony Cunningham's charges.
Smith for his part, brought himself to give a victory speech.
Alongside Roscommon, Armagh are promoted to Division One football for 2021 after a strong finish against Clare. Elsewhere, Limerick lifted the Division four crown while Wicklow earned promotion from that division. On Sunday, we will discover who goes down alongside Meath in Division One while either Leitrim or Tipperary will face drop down to the bottom tier.
Kerry 2-18 Donegal 0-10 (Kerry are Division One Champions)
Roscommon 1-12 Cavan 0-13 (Roscommon are Division Two Champions, Cavan are relegated)
Armagh 1-18 Clare 1-13 (Armagh promoted)
Kildare 0-16 Westmeath 0-11
Laois 3-12 Fermanagh 1-11 (Fermanagh relegated)
Antrim 2-14 Waterford 0-13
Limerick 1-16 Sligo 1-14 (Limerick are Division Four Champions)
Wicklow 0-13 Wexford 0-10 (Wicklow are going up)