Longford reach NFL Quarter Final
The 90s started off well for Longford with an excellent league campaign that saw Longford reach a quarter final against Down, who would win the 1991 All-Ireland. The league campaign had notable wins over Westmeath and Galway. This left Longford in good shape for the championship and a first round win over Westmeath set up a match with Meath, but Meath were much too strong on in the next round. A similar path was followed by the minors who defeated Westmeath but lost out to Meath in the semi final. 1991 was full of disappointment. A tough league campaign yielded just one win and a draw before a heart breaking defeat away to Louth in the championship, a late Louth goal giving them a famous win.
Mixed Fortunes for Longford
The next few years were tough for Longford followers as heavy defeats to Wicklow, Offaly,Laois and Meath saw early exits from the championship. League wins were also rare, although a good run in 1994 saw Longford reach a league play off for promotion, but Westmeath won the game by two points. Similar results came at u-21 level, but 1995 minor side will always be a case of what might have been. A great opening round win over Offaly set up a local derby with Westmeath, but a late point for the lake county saw them win 1-11 to 2-7 as they went on their path to All-Ireland glory.
1996 saw Wicklow edge out Longford by a point in the championship before a low point as Offaly had a huge win over Longford in 97. That they would end up as Leinster champions was of scant consolation. 1998 saw a change in the senior championship format as Longford, Wexford, Carlow and Westmeath would play off to see who would reach the quarter final. Longford overcame Wexford after a replay, but Westmeath were too strong the next day out. 1999 had a similar pattern as Longford and Wexford again drew with Longford winning the replay, but again Westmeath were much too strong in Mullingar the next day out. The late 90s were tough results to take, but a new generation of footballers were being blooded as the likes of Padraic Davis, Paul Barden, Trevor Smullen and Niall Sheridan all made there debuts. The 1999 u-21 championship saw two titanic battles with Dublin, but the men from the city won the replay after extra time.
1990’s Club Overview
On the club scene, the senior club championship in the 90s saw different teams dominate at different stages. Longford Slashers completed three in a row in 1991 and won another in 1994. Mostrim took a title in 92 and Killoe would win two titles in three years in 1993 & 1995 before Fr Manning Gaels would bridge a gap of over 40 years in bringing a title to Drumlish and Ballinamuck and go on to complete three in a row in 1996, 1997 & 1998, including a run to the Leinster club semi final in 1998. Dromard ended the decade with a famous championship win, their first since 1946.
The intermediate championship was competitive as always. Titles went to St Columbas, Abbeylara (2), Cashel (3), Dromard (2), Clonguish and Ballymahon. Indeed it was noteable that Dromard, Abbeylara, Clonguish and Ballymahon would all go on to win senior titles after winning the intermediate crowns. Junior titles went to Legan (2), Shroid (2), Clonguish, Killashee, Ballymore, St Columbas, Colmcille and Rathcline.