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Published: 20:52 | 2/7/16

Donegal knock Monaghan off Ulster perch

Sligo and Laois also victorious

Donegal have beaten Monaghan at the second attempt, clinching a replay victory by a single point, 0-17 to 2-10, at Kingspan Breffni Park to reach the Ulster SFC final.

The 2012 All-Ireland champions led from early on in the game with scores from Michael Murphy and Paddy McBrearty, but Monaghan hung in there against their opponents’ onslaught.

Goals from Shane Carey and a Conor McManus penalty ensured the defending Ulster champions stayed in touch as the visitors led by 0-10 to 2-02 at the interval.

Donegal kept ahead for the remainder of the game but they were made to sweat in the closing stages after Rory Kavanagh was sent off on 65 minutes.

Murphy helped his side cross the finish line as he knocked over his fifth point, all from placed balls, while Marty O’Reilly also caught the eye, grabbing three points from play.

Donegal will face either Tyrone or Cavan in the provincial decider later this month with the pair set to meet for a second time on Sunday after drawing 0-16 to 3-7 a fortnight ago.

Laois held off an admirable fightback from Armagh to advance to the next round of the All-Ireland SFC qualifiers by 1-11 to 1-10.

A fortnight ago Laois beat Armagh by three points but a replay was ordered after it was discovered Mick Lillis’ side had used seven substitutes, one more than the six permitted.

Laois looked to have the tie sown up when leading by seven points at the break but Kieran McGeeney’s side came storming back to lead by two but Laois found another gear and John O’Loughlin’s 68th-minute ultimately proved the difference.

Armagh finished the match with 14 men as Aaron Findon was sent off for an off-the-ball incident with three minutes left on the clock.

Goals from Kyle Cawley and Darragh Cummins helped Sligo cruise past Leitrim by 2-15 to 0-10 at Markievicz Park.

Sligo led by a whopping eight points after the first half and never looked in danger of allowing their neighbours back into the game, with the second-half goals ensuring they barely broke sweat as they progress to the next round.

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