Benny Bonner and Drumkeen United enjoying great start to campaign

A look ahead to this weekend's Donegal League action

Diarmaid Doherty


Diarmaid Doherty


Donegal League

Drumkeen United, pictured before a McCormick Cup tie earlier this season.

Later this month, Drumkeen United will mark the club’s 40th anniversary with a special function in Letterkenny’s Radisson Hotel.
The club will honour the all-conquering team from the 1993/94 season, a side which was managed by Noel Bonner.
Fast forward almost 25 years, and the current Sunday side is managed by Noel’s son Benny - a quality left back who combines playing and managing the St. Patrick’s Park outftit.
Now 33, Benny has seen plenty of ups and downs at Drumkeen, but he’s hopeful that come the end of the Donegal League season, his team can give the club more reason to celebrate.
“We couldn’t have asked for a better start to be honest,” Benny said.
“We managed to win the Area Shield in the Brian McCormick Cup which was a bit of a bonus. We got together for pre-season fairly early and our aim was to try and do well in that competition.
“I don’t think we expected to win the Shield final but we did, and we’d to beat three teams from the Premier Division to do so.”
Drumkeen have won all four games in the league and sit top of the table in the Donegal Physiotherapy and Performance Centre Division Two.
Bonner has a strong squad at his disposal with former players Paul McCauley (goalkeeper), Philip White, Richie Moore and Seanie Gallagher all back with the team. Niall Bonner, who rejoined the club last season, made his first start in last weekend’s win over Curragh after recovering from a calf problem while Shane Laverty has hit the ground running after signing from Cappry Rovers.
This weekend, Drumkeen are away to Copany Rovers and while Bonner’s side will be expected to win, the manager is warning against complacency.
“There’s no point just turning up for games and thinking you’re going to win. When players do that, that’s the day you’ll be caught out,” he said.

Busy weekend
That match is one of five games in that division on a busy weekend in the league.
In the Premier Division, Castlefinn Celtic and Cappry Rovers are the only clubs who managed 100 per cent records so far.
Castlefinn have won three from three games and sit top of the table. Cappry are fourth with six points from their two games.
This week, the two sides meet at Cappry Park in the top game in the division.
In the Temple Domestic Appliances Division, Ballybofey United against St. Catherine’s is undoubtedly the game of the day this weekend.
Ballybofey have continued where they left off last season by enjoying an impressive run of results and they lead the way in the table with three wins from four.
St. Catherine’s are just two points behind and are one of four clubs sitting joint second on seven points (although they have played one game less.
The Killybegs outfit will be hoping to maintain their unbeaten start when they go to the Finn Valley Centre.
The stand-out fixture on Saturday is in the Glencar Inn Division where Strand Rovers, the leaders, meet neighbours Arranmore United in Maghery.
The Islanders have been a bit hit and miss in the league this season, and even though it’s still early days in their season, they could do with avoiding another defeat this weekend.
In the Old Orchard Division, Drumbar lead the way. However, they have no game on Saturday so second place St. Catherine’s will go level on points at the top if they can beat Drumkeen United at Emerald Park, Killybegs.


Games kick-off at 2pm

Saturday, 14th October
Glencar Inn Saturday Division One
Strand Rvs v Arranmore Utd (1pm)
Orchard F.C. v Glencar Celtic
Castlefin Celtic v Keadue Rovers
Donegal Town v Glenea United
Milford United v Cappry Rovers

Old Orchard Saturday Division Two
Drumoghill F.C. v Lagan Harps
Dunlewey Celtic v Raphoe Town
St. Catherines v Drumkeen United
Kildrum Tigers v Fintown Harps
Drumbar United v Gweedore Celtic

Sunday, 15th October
Brian Mc Cormick Premier Division
Cappry Rovers v Castlefin Celtic
Glenea United v Milford United
Drumoghill F.C. v Kilmacrennan Celtic
Lagan Harps v Donegal Town
Kildrum Tigers v Rathmullan Celtic

Temple Domestic Appliances Div One
Erne Wanderers v Gweedore Celtic
Raphoe Town v Keadue Rovers
Ballybofey United v St. Catherines
Bonagee United v Lifford Celtic
Dunkineely Celtic v Convoy Arsenal

Donegal Physiotherapy Division Two
Curragh Athletic v Deele Harps
Eany Celtic v Kerrykeel ’71 F.C.
Cranford United v Glenree United
Copany Rovers v Drumkeen United
Whitestrand Utd v Letterbarrow Cel.