Karl Lacey was handed the man-to-man marking job on Derry’s Paddy Bradley. And while the Oak Leaf ace ended up with six points, he was restricted to just one point from play.
The move to mark Bradley, necessitated the Four Masters’ All-Star reverting back from his more customary centre role in recent times to his old stomping ground of corner back. It also meant Karl forsaking the more attacking side of his game that had been used with great effect in the course of the National Football League.
“Jim just asked me to mark Paddy. He is a class forward and I was just happy to do it and go out and do my best for the good of the team,” said Karl.
“It is all about the team and what Jim thinks is best for the team. I’m just happy to play wherever I’m asked and do whatever job Jim asks me to do. It’s all for the good of the team. I’m just happy to do whatever I’m asked to do as long as I’m on the team.”
Reflecting on the victory and the manner of its execution Karl said the most important thing was that Donegal had won and qualified for a semi-final meeting with Tyrone.
“We were focused going into the game and expecting a tough challenge from Derry. We had beaten them in the Ulster final last year and were expecting them to come at us from the word go.
“It was pay-back time for them but we probably got the rub of the green and got the goals when it mattered. The goals really rattled them and I suppose when Colm (McFadden) struck the second it put us ten points up and we really pushed on in the second half.
“It is all about development and we have kicked on from last year and we are always looking at ways of improving our game. We are going to have to improve and step up again on today’s performance against Tyrone, the next day.
“We have worked on and introduced a few things into our play this year and so far they seem to be working for us. But we are going to have to get back down to work next week now and concentrate on Tyrone.
“The focus for the next two weeks will be on Tyrone and putting in a good performance. After today we will head to Clones full of confidence but knowing we have a job to do.”
Like the rest of his team mates and the whole of Donegal, Karl was delighted to have team captain Michael Murphy back on board.
“It was good to have Michael back. We only learned before the game that Michael was in the team. He was worried about his match fitness and sharpness all week but I think he proved that he is certainly fit enough and there was no great problem with his match sharpness either.”.