Donegal’s top flight status out of their own hands

By Daragh Small

DONEGAL will drop to Division Two if Mayo avoid defeat to Galway on Sunday.

After six rounds of action, Maxi Curran’s  side remain pointless at the bottom of the standings but he was focusing on the positives.

“It was a much-improved performance from us in the second half,” he said after Friday’s 2-13 to 0-6 defeat against Dublin in Letterkenny.

The home side failed to register a score and their status in the top flight is now out of their own hands.

“We tried to play a system that helped us beat Dublin last year but it didn’t work,” Curran said.

“We probably played against a stiffer breeze in the first half which meant their kicking range was a bit further out.

“In the second half we just decided to go similar to Dublin, to go at it and get stuck in and that’s what we did. At least it made the game more competitive.”

Dublin midfielder Jennifer Dunne says it was great to get another good Lidl NFL Division 1 performance under the belt at the business end of the season.

The Dubs still have a chance of reaching the Lidl NFL Division 1 Final after their impressive win.

Hannah Tyrrell finished with 1-3 and although Donegal did launch a second half comeback, Orlagh Nolan’s penalty sealed the win.

“It was a good win for us. Coming up to Letterkenny for a game on St Patrick’s Day isn’t easy but we played well,” said Dunne.

“The first half went so well for us. We got our scores early and managed to build up a good lead which was what we wanted.

“That’s four wins from our six games which is brilliant and it’s great to go into the last weekend of games, and ahead of the championship, with another good performance.”

Kerry, who have already qualified for the Final, succumbed to their first defeat in a 1-17 to 2-6 reversal against Cork.

The Munster rivals clashed at Páirc Uí Chaoimh with Cork taking a 1-9 to 0-4 lead into half-time, following Hannah Looney’s goal. Eimear Kiely helped herself to 0-8 while Síofra O’Shea came on to score 2-2 for the losers.

“Whatever team Kerry put out wasn’t within our control, all we focused on during the week was what we were going to do,” said Ronayne.

“We are delighted to score 17 points as we haven’t been shooting the lights out in some games. We have been good at getting goals, missed a few again and that’s something we have to work on ahead of the Munster and All-Ireland championships.

“We have one league game left and we will prepare for another tough challenge in Meath now next weekend.”

Kerry are still well on course for a big say in the Final but their joint-manager Darragh Long knows they need to improve after this display.

“We put ourselves in the very fortunate position of already having qualified for a league final in a few weeks’ time so we were able to change up our training routine and we expected a couple of heavy legs,” said Long.

“But still overall we wouldn’t be happy with the first half performance and there are standards we set within our group that just weren’t met.”

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