Clash of the titans in Donegal

By Michael McMullan

CHAMPIONS Naomh Conaill face the acid test of their credentials against St Eunan’s in Sunday’s Donegal SFC semi-final in Ballybofey.

It’s a repeat of last year’s final won by Martin Regan’s men and the recent group clash that finished level, 0-9 all, in Glenties.

St Eunan’s were champions in 2021, beating Naomh Conaill by 10 points – 1-11 to 0-4 – in the decider.

Questions were asked but Naomh Conaill haven’t gone away. Goalkeeper Stephen McGrath, Eoin Wade, Anthony Thompson and Leo McLoone joined the 100 club having played a century of senior championship games in their win over Kilcar last weekend.

Eoghan McGettigan has been a loss but they’ve still managed to get back to the business end of the championship.

St Eunan’s needed a fine showing from Niall O’Donnell to pull them clear of Aodh Ruadh last weekend.

He came off the bench to kick four second half points with Shane O’Donnell, and Peter McEniff and Conor O’Donnell jnr hitting two points apiece.

This one has all the ingredients of an encounter that can go all the way and has the spice of a feisty ending to their draw.

MacCumhaill’s take on Gaoth Dobhair on Saturday in O’Donnell Park (4pm) in the second semi-final.

Oisín Gallen has been one of the stars of the championship and was recently nominated for an All-Star.

You have to go back to 2004 for the Ballybofey side’s last appearance in the decider.

Gallen scored 1-9 in their swashbuckling win over a fancied Glenswilly last weekend with Jamie Keegan and Joel Bradley-Walsh adding to the mix.

Gaoth Dobhair were without Michael Carroll but saw off Ardara with four goals in all and seven Ethan Harkin points.

They’ll need a huge performance to take themselves back to the final and it will be interesting to see can MacCumhaill’s push on.

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