It’s nine weeks since these two last shared the field, when they clashed in the first round of the national league. But this weekends meeting is the one that counts.
In terms of championship, the most recent meeting came in 2019. Many Armagh followers will remember that outing, as the Orchard steam rolled Malachy O’Rourke’s team.
Their 2014 draw was a classic. Monaghan had enough to get the win in the replay and send Armagh tumbling to the qualifiers.
Saturday’s semi-final showdown will be the 50th championship meeting between the two teams. Armagh have won 19 of those games, with Monaghan coming out on top in 24.
2014: Monaghan 0-14 Armagh 0-14 (Ulster SF)
Kieran McGeeney had been added to Paul Grimley’s management team in the winter and Armagh were back contesting an Ulster championship game in a sun-soaked Clones.
With Aaron Kernan laying on the ground injured in the final minutes, up stepped substitute Rory Grugan to strike a left-footed free. The Ballymacnab man held his nerve to split the posts and force a replay.
James Morgan held Conor McManus to just one point from play before the Clontibret star saw the line with a black card.
Stefan Campbell, Jamie Clarke and Tony Kernan all top scored for the Orchard County with 0-3 apiece.
2014: Monaghan 1-18 Armagh 0-13 (Ulster SF Replay)
It was back to Clones the following week and this time Monaghan had enough to reach the decider.
Conor McManus was on fire this time around. He tormented the Armagh rear-guard and ended the game with 1-7 (4f) to his name.
Aaron Findon’s palmed goal got Armagh off to a good start. McManus replied with a major to see Monaghan ahead 1-8 to 1-4 at the interval.
Jamie Clarke was on song in the inside line, hitting 0-5, 0-4 from play while Tony Kernan top scored with 0-7 (6f).
2016: Monaghan 2-9 Armagh 0-16 (McKenna Cup R2)
Two goals from Owen Duffy and Barry McGinn weren’t enough to get something from the game for Monaghan.
Midway through the second half, Duffy’s three-pointer seemed to have killed the game. It put Monaghan ahead 2-7 to 0-8 on the 44th minute.
Armagh fought back and outscored their opponents 0-8 to 0-2 in the final quarter to sneak through with one to spare.
Man of the Match Stefan Campbell recorded a personal tally of 0-5 (4f) while Ethan Rafferty chipped in with 0-3 (1f).
2019: Armagh 0-13 Monaghan 1-9 (McKenna Cup R3)
Armagh welcomed Monaghan to the Athletic Grounds, needing a win to get through to the McKenna Cup semi-final.
Having saw off St Mary’s and Antrim easily, the Farney county proved a much tougher test for McGeeney’s men.
The Orchardmen topped their group with a hard fought, one-point win. Jack McCarron slotted home a first half penalty but Armagh had enough to get over the line.
Jamie Clarke picked up a second bookable offence in the second half and headed for an early shower. Stefan Campbell top scored with 0-3 from play.
2019: Monaghan 1-12 Armagh 2-17 (Qualifiers R2)
This was as good as Armagh have played under Kieran McGeeney. They were much too strong for a tired looking Monaghan side.
Rian O’Neill fired home two goals as the orange men marched passed the hosts in devastating fashion.
The Farney men replied with a Jack McCarron major, but it was too little too late at that stage. Armagh also had 13 different scorers on the day.
Malachy O’Rourke stepped down after the game while it proved to be both Dessie Mone and Vinny Corey’s last outing for the Oriel County.
2021: Monaghan 1-12 Armagh 1-16 (National Football League R1)
The most recent meeting. Armagh got off to a fantastic start in Division One, defeating Seamus McEnaney’s side by four points.
Monaghan breached the Covid training rules, meaning the game was moved to a neutral venue, Brewster Park in Enniskillen.
Stefan Campbell rattled the net in the opening minutes as Armagh shot into an early lead. ‘Soupy’ slotted a penalty after Jarly Og Burns had been fouled inside the box.
Sean Jones grabbed Monaghan’s major, but Armagh’s superior final quarter saw them sit top of the league after one game.