Donegal continue good league start

A very competent display from Donegal saws them take full points from their trip to Galway and retain their top of the table position.

A very competent display from Donegal saws them take full points from their trip to Galway and retain their top of the table position.

Donegal 1-16

Galway 0-12

From early on it was obvious that Donegal were the hungrier and fitter team and the result was never really in doubt.

There some very good personal displays as well with Martin McElhinney outstanding at midfield while Ryan McHugh was equally effective as an attacking option from deep. They get to share the man of the match award.

There were plenty of others who showed up well from Karl Lacey, Anthony Thompson, Rory Kavanagh, Odhran MacNiallais, Mark McHugh and the inside trio.

Donegal, as is normal, played better against the breeze, which suited their short passing game much better.

Donegal opted to play against the stiff breeze and would have been very happy at the half-time whistle as they led 1-6 to 0-4.

The goal on 14 minutes was a thing of beauty, started at the back and after 14 passes, Colm McFadden finished in style. Among those involved were Frank McGlynn, who cut out a Galway attack and Neil McGee, Ryan McHugh, Rory Kavanagh and Dermot Molloy were in the move.

The goal put Donegal 1-2 to 0-2 ahead, McFadden and Michael Murphy (from a very difficult angle) getting the Donegal points while Michael Martin and Gary Sice scored for Galway.

Paul Varley and Paul Conroy had good Galway points but the second quarter saw Donegal take complete control with Anthony Thompson lively at wing back and midfielders Rory Kavanagh and Martin McElhinney leading the charge. Mark McHugh and Odhran MacNiallais were full of running and the points began to flow from Dermot Molloy, two McFadden frees and Molloy again as he finished a great move that stargted with a Thompson turnover

.On the stroke of half-time Donegal almost got a second goal as a crossfield ball to Michael Murphy was cut out by the ‘keeper but it fell to Colm McFadden and from 35m he lobbed for goal but the ball went just a foot wide.

Galway did put on a spurt at the start of the second half hitting three points in three minutes after Ryan McHugh had opened the second half account.

But Michael Murphy steadied the ship with a point from play and a free and the margin would never dip below four after that.

Odhran MacNiallais and Murphy traded points with two from Paul Conroy before Patrick McBrearty marked his introduction with a point on 54 minutes to put Donegal five up again.

That margin was to remain as McFadden and two more from McBrearty kept Donegal well ahead as Danny Cummins and a Sean Armstrong free completed the scoring for Galway, who were much improved in the second half.

On the stroke of time Declan Walsh, just on the pitch, had the final point.

Galway: Manus Breathnach; Donal O’Neill, Finian Hanley, Johnny Duane; Paul Varley (0-1), Joss Moore, Sean Denvir; Thomas Flynn, James Kavanagh; Gary Sice (0-2), Sean Armstrong (0-1,f), Paul Conroy (0-3); Gareth Bradshaw, Michael Martin (0-1), Eoin Concannon (0-3). Subs., Aonghus Tierney for Hanley 12; Gary O’Donnell for Denvir 32; David O’Connell for Bradshaw 50; Danny Cummins (0-1) for Martin 54; Damien Comer for Sice 63

Donegal: Paul Durcan; Karl Lacey, Neil McGee, Ryan McHugh (0-1); Frank McGlynn, Anthony Thompson; Rory Kavanagh, Martin McElhinney; Mark McHugh, Christy Toye, Odhran MacNiallais (0-1); Colm McFadden (1-4,2f), Michael Murphy (0-4,2f). Dermot Molloy (0-2). Subs., Neil Gallagher for Kavanagh ht; Patrick McBrearty (0-3) for Toye 43; Hugh McFadden for D Molloy 48; Martin O’Reilly for MacNiallais 64; Declan Walsh (0-1) for Lacey 68; Luke Keaney for McElhinney 70

Referee: Fergal Kelly (Longford)