EIRGRID ALL-IRELAND U-21 SEMI-FINAL REACTION

Dublin U-21 manager Dessie Farrell points to Donegal being flat after hectic schedule

Peter Campbell

Reporter:

Peter Campbell

Dublin U-21 manager Dessie Farrell points to Donegal being flat after hectic schedule

Dublin U-21 manager Dessie Farrell

"Look, it is great. Look, generally I'm surprised at the margin here. Donegal were a little flat coming in to this; their schedule was hectic. They would have wanted to be super human for that not to have had an impact, and that probably came against them today.
"But look, we can only do what we can do and we are happy to be going to an All-Ireland final," was the reaction of Dublin manager, Dessie Farrell, after the semi-final in Kingspan Breffni Park.
The Dublin boss, whose mother comes from Meenaneary in South West Donegal, was asked if the meeting between the sides at minor level three years ago when Donegal won by a point was a motivating factor.
"No we didn't talk too much about it. It was mentioned during the week alright, but this was a new day, a new dawn type of thing. They've worked hard to this point and they were here on their own merits, and they wanted to take it as it comes," he said.
Farrell had a smile when asked about the black card, especially as it came in the opening minutes of the contest.
"I can't repeat what I was thinking to tell you the truth. Yeah, it was disappointing. He will be disappointed himself to get involved, but I think there were two players involved in it. How Con was singled out, I thought was harsh. However, we were able to overcome that particular issue," said Farrell.
The Dublin manager admitted that they had been worried about a number of knocks and niggles that his team were carrying in the week leading into the game.
"We were probably worried about our bench. Donegal have a real strong bench and had a long of quality to come in there. We had Con (O'Callaghan) gone and then Andy Foley got injured and it took the heart out of us a little bit. But we were trying to manage the situation, to keep the energy up and getting fellas in at the right time and the fellas that went in did a right job for us."
For Farrell, this was a big win as many of his teams have lost at the semi-final stage in the past. "Look, it is great. Look, generally I'm surprised at the margin here. Donegal were a little flat coming in to this; their schedule was hectic. They would have wanted to be super human for that not to have had an impact, and that probably came against them today.
"But look, we can only do what we can do and we are happy to be going to an All-Ireland final.
"I think it was a very young team we had last year. This team is a bit more experienced, a bit more mature. I think we were probably punching above our weight last year in some ways and that experience stands to them. Through failure, the greatest learning can be, and that's more on an individual basis."
He was happy that this team have come through this year and is hoping that they can express themselves in the final.
"It's great for them, because they have struggled at this point for a long time. They know they're there, but look, it will count for nothing if they don't put in a performance the next day.
"They struggled a little in the Leinster campaign. But look it, we are over the moon to be in the All-Ireland final and it will be a great two weeks for those young fellows," said Farrell.