Donegal opened their season with a win over Sligo/Leitrim at Curragh Athletic's grouds in the SFAI U-13 Inter-league yesterday afternoon.
Kilmacrennan Celtic player Joshua Bradley's first half goal proved the difference between the sides in a tie that Donegal were the better outfit and dominated for much of the 60 minutes.
The goal may not have been of the vintage variety. Bradley bundled the ball over the line after a Daniel Gildea cross from way out on the right hand side squirmed under the body of Sligo/Leitrim keeper Ronan Flanagan. Blake McGarvey was also following up but was beaten to the touch by Bradley.
That goal came on 23 minutes and it was no more than Donegal deserved as McGarvey and Bradley had gone close to earlier breaking the deadlock as wind assisted Donegal dominated the early proceedings.
Gildea, who had a good game on the wing, provided the cross for both of the chances with McGarvey just wide from the edge of the box and Bradley just over the top from close in.
Luke Casserly had Sligo/Leitrim's only real chance of the first period when he showed some nimble footwork to beat a number of defenders before driving just wide of the advancing Patrick McGarvey.
Sligo/Leitrim did press a little more in the second half but found Patrick McGarvey rock solid in the Donegal goals. Donegal had a couple of chances to add a second. McGarvey drew a good save from Flynn and Murphy drove a long range volley wide.
This was a good all round first day out performance for Gerry Crossan’s young guns with Patrick McGarvey, Conor McDaid, Joel Gorman, Blake McGarvey, Bradley and Daniel Gildea the standout players.
Donegal: Patrick McGarvey, Finian Coyle, Shane Black, Ultan O’Grady, Conor McDaid, Joel Gorman, (Adam Murphy 53), Blake McGarvey, Roy Pyper, Joshua Bradley (Kilmacrennan Celtic (Josh McCullagh, 59)), Adam Murphy (Bonagee United) (Adam Yisau (39), Daniel Gildea.
Sligo/Leitrim: Ronan Flynn; Dylan Walls, Caolan Hunt, Peter Maguire, Patrick Maher, Canice Mulligan, Luke Casserly (K. Ogun 43), Kailam Baslow, John Kenny, Sean McAteer, John Hegarty (Mulrennan 22).
Referee: Liam McLaughlin. .