After the disappointments of the last couple of weeks, it was a good weekend once again for Donegal football with the minors and U-17 recording wins against Monaghan in their respective Ulster semi-finals.
These were two very good results especially as both were away from home on opposition soil. They were also important wins after the seniors and U-21s losing their big games in the last few weeks; but even more so in that it is evidence that a good pool of talent is coming up through the ranks. Hopefully, they can now go on and win their respective finals.
The minors are chasing a third Ulster Minor League in-a-row, which if it materialises, will be a first.
We have a great record in the McGuigan Cup (U-17) so it would be nice to maintain that record and build on it for the future in the championship. We have only won one Ulster Minor title in the last ten years and have only reached one All-Ireland minor final.
But that said the success in the league is encouraging and is an endorsement to the quality of the coaching these players are receiving. You can have all the quality players in the world but if the coaching is not up to scratch then all that quality cannot be maximised.
A big well done to Shaun Paul Barrett, the minor manager, and Brian McGeehin, the U-17 manager, and their backroom teams and keep up the good work and all the best in their respective finals.
Reflecting back on last weekend’s defeat to Dublin in the league semi-final and the National league in general we had a disappointing end to the campaign after getting off to a good start. We won the first three and then proceeded to lose the next four games, plus the semi-final to Dublin.
It is hard to know if the fall-off was down to heavy training or ageing legs. We have just under seven weeks now to get things right for the championship.
We still have a lot of experience in the team and if we get our fitness levels up and get the hunger back there is no reason why we should not give Ulster a right good rattle.
Finally, this week I know our senior hurlers lost their play-off to Roscommon last weekend but there were encouraging signs in the performance. Hopefully, their luck will turn in the Nicky Rackard Cup.
Brian McEniff was in conversation with Tom Comack.