Kevin Cassidy

KEVIN CASSIDY: Glen found a way

THERE is simply nowhere else to start this week other than to congratulate the Glen club on their fantastic achievement of becoming All-Ireland senior football champions.

I said here last week that I thought that their hunger and desire would see them over the line. I also expected them to perform like they always have done, but that wasn’t how things panned out last weekend.

Before we get into that, we have to also offer our commiserations to a gallant St Brigid’s team, who, at times last Sunday, looked unplayable and as if they were on course to cause a massive upset.

They play an exciting brand of football and with young Ben O’Carroll up front they really are a match for anyone. I wouldn’t be surprised to see them go on to do what Glen did this year and come back a year to the day after defeat to lift the crown.

Glen probably played the worst game of football that we have seen from them over the last two or three years, but when it mattered most the big guns stood up and drove their team to victory.

As I sat watching the first half, I sent a text to Glen man Ben McGuckin who is a friend of mine which read “do yas have anyone you can switch onto O’Carroll because if you can tie him down I’m not sure who else they have to step up.”

In the second half, we saw Dougan keep O’Carroll quiet and the rest, as they say, is history. Once he was out of the game a big part of the Roscommon champions’ forward play went with him.

Malachy O’Rourke made the change that needed to happen. In doing this, he also released Warnock to a more attacking role. For me, the goal from Conor Glass aside, Warnock maybe kicked one of the most important scores in Glen’s history because boy did they need that score.

Ben left a message for me at 2:58am, no doubt about ten pints deep, When I got up for work on Monday it read “it’s ok, Dougie sorted it in the second half.” In typical Glen fashion, they just didn’t panic.

There is not a lot more that you can say about this tremendous team. They are a credit to the community, a credit to the club and a credit to the county.

They also showed the rest of the country how to deal with misfortune and use it to drive you forward. Maith sibh. I am sure the celebrations are still on-going. Sure, why wouldn’t they be?

This week we see the start of the National Football League. On Sunday, I will head to Ballybofey with TG4 to cover the Donegal home game with Cork.

As a supporter, I think this is one we’re all looking forward to. The McKenna Cup was good for Donegal, but we got a bit of a rude awakening in the final against Derry.

I’m sure Jim and the team will be eager to bounce back this weekend against a Cork team who will be high on confidence after beating Kerry in the McGrath Cup final.

A win on the opening day is always good, but especially for Donegal who will have serious ambitions of climbing out of Division Two so a good start is important and I expect to see the lads deliver the two points on Sunday.

Elsewhere, there are a couple of cracking contests to look forward and, as usual, TG4 will show the rest of the broadcasters how our games should be covered. They travel the length and breadth of the country to bring you the best games of the weekend and deserve full credit.

Receive quality journalism wherever you are, on any device. Keep up to date from the comfort of your own home with a digital subscription.
Any time | Any place | Anywhere


Gaelic Life is published by North West of Ireland Printing & Publishing Company Limited, trading as North-West News Group.
Registered in Northern Ireland, No. R0000576. 10-14 John Street, Omagh, Co. Tyrone, N. Ireland, BT781DW