Donegal 2-13 Derry 0-9
A SLUGGISH looking Derry team proved to be no match for a much fitter and more cohesive Donegal in the Ulster Championship at Ballybofey on Saturday evening.
For the handful of Derry fans among the crowd of over 11,000 it was a galling experience as they saw their team in the words of manager John Brennan, ‘bossed all over the field’
Derry were still in the game for the first half hour until big Donegal full forward Colm McFadden was allowed to cut in along the end line and set up Leo McLoone for an easy goal. At half time the reigning champions led by 1-6 to 0-4.
If the Derry fans expected their team to come out with all guns blazing in the second half they were to be disillusioned. Their team went from bad to worse and in the end Donegal were virtually walking through a deflated and disorganised Oak Leaf outfit.
The winners packed their defence and broke quickly scoring with relative ease. Derry’s movements were laboured in comparison when players repeatedly caught in possession, Their skill levels were poor and all too often they were disposed as players went for the same ball in a display where understanding and teamwork were sadly lacking.
John Brennan who saw his side depend on other results to stay in Division Two of the National League must have wondered how it all went wrong. He had felt that the championship would bring the best out of his injury hit team but there was to be no uplift from the league form.
Long before the end the Derry fans were on their way home for by that stage Donegal were out of sight. Their second goal came nine minutes into the second half when they virtually walked through a static Derry defence where Colm McFadden was at the head of the queue to smash the ball past stranded Derry keeper Barry Gillis.
Derry did put on a bit of a spurt near the end when Donegal had eased up and Mark Lynch brought a fine save out of giant Donegal keeper Paul Durcan.
Donegal scorers Colm McFadden 1-2, Leo McLoone 1-0, Michael Murphy 0-3, Patrick McBrearty and David Walsh 0-2 each, Frank McGlynn, Ryan Bradley, Neil Gallagher, and Anthony Thompson 0-1 each.
Derry scorers Paddy Bradley 0-6, Sean Leo McGoldrick, Mark Lynch and Eoin Bradley 0-1 each.
Referee Martin Duffy Sligo.