By Shaun Casey
IT’S do or die for Donaghmoyne on Sunday afternoon when they host Magheracloone as both sides hope to retain their senior status. Donaghmoyne manager David Lennon’s hails this as a must win for all sides involved in the four-team relegation group.
“It’s a must win for all teams,” said Lennon. “Ballybay can maybe afford not to but for Truagh, ourselves and Maghercloone, it’s a must win situation or you’re practically gone. You’re in with a chance if results go your way but it’s a must win.”
Whoever finishes bottom of the relegation group will immediately go to intermediate level while second from bottom take on Aughnamullen, who ended up at the bottom of the senior league, in a relegation decider.
Donaghmoyne finished top of the league, but their form tailed off come the championship. “We’ve had a very poor championship run and I just can’t put my finger on why after topping the senior league this year.
“We conceded a 64th-minute penalty to Clontibret (in round one) and were beaten with the last kick of the ball and we just haven’t recovered from that, that was a massive setback.
“Because of that we found ourselves in the relegation group again. When we came up to Senior last year, we tried to establish ourselves and we did that. We were delighted with our league run this year but it’s a different competition now.
“We’re in the bottom four and you have to come out fighting and unless we go out on Sunday and play to our very best, we’ll be on the losing end.”
Donaghmoyne drew with Truagh last weekend as victory was snatched from their grasp with the concession of another late goal. “It was a very disappointing result,” added Lennon.
“We conceded a goal in the fourth minute of injury time, and we were three points up. We felt we controlled the game, and it was just one of those goals, it was a high ball in that wasn’t cleared.
“It was probably an error from a couple of our defenders and our ‘keeper but it’s just one of those goals that goes in with the last kick of the ball. We were left very disappointed. It was a point dropped for us; it wasn’t a point gained.
“Ballybay beat Magheracloone last week, I watched the game, and Magheracloone were a very young, hungry, impressive team and very fast.
“They could cause us all sorts of trouble and there’ll be nothing in it, there’ll be a kick of the ball either way.
“They know it’s their last hurrah and if they don’t win, they’ll be relegated so their going to throw everything at us and it’s going to be a mammoth task to get over them.”
But Lennon is hoping that the comfortable surroundings of home advantage will help see his side over the line.
“Donaghmoyne is not an easy team to beat at home. But this is do or die and this is championship football.”