St. Michael's and Bundoran meet at the Bridge in Dunfanaghy
Realt na Mara 1 1 0 0 2
St. Michael’s 1 1 0 0 2
MacCumhaill’s 1 0 1 0 0
Malin 1 0 1 0 0
MacCumhaill’s 0-13, St. Michael’s 3-9
Realt na Mara 3-18, Malin 1-11
Malin v Sean MacCumhaills, Saturday 7.30 pm
St Michael’s v Bundoran, Sunday 2.30 pm
This group is made up two Division One teams (St Michael’s and Bundoran) and two Division Two teams (Malin and Sean MacCumhaill’s).
St Michael’s are the favourites to emerge from the group.
But that is not how former Donegal scoring ace and the man that carries the main scoring threat for Michael’s Colm McFadden sees it.
“We have Bundoran at home this weekend and it will not be easy and is far from a foregone conclusion that we will win it,” said McFadden.
“We played them a couple of years ago in Bundoran and we were lucky to come out of it with a draw. In fact they had a chance to win in the dying seconds but went for a goal when the game was level and when a point would have been enough.
“We also drew with them a couple of years ago in a relegation play-off and we were lucky enough to scrape through.
“They are a good side and the go into the game with momentum following wins over Glenswilly, Gaoth Dobhair and Dungloe in their last three league games.
“They have the two Brennans, Jamie and Paul, Shane McGowan, Christy Keaney, Michael McEniff and big Ciaran McCaughey and Peter McGonagle.
“With the exception of Mark Anthony (McGinley) we have everybody else. Toye (Christy) is back and playing well which is a huge boost for us.
“We need to win on Sunday because we have to go to Malin the following Sunday and that is one place we do not want to be going under pressure to get a result.
“Malin are at home to MacCumhaill’s this weekend. They also met last year and there is a bit of history between them.
“Malin seem to have everybody back and put up a big score against Killybegs last Sunday. They are a good championship side and Glenswilly only beat them by a point in last year’s county semi-final.
“It really is a game that can go either way, but with home advantage you expect Malin to win.”
Colm McFadden and company can go a long way down the road of clinching their place in the last eight against Bundoran. A fully fit Christy Toye is a huge lift to St Michael’s. Bundoran are a team with great potential and are more than capable of going to the Bridge and giving St Michael’s a right good battle. But in the end it is hard to look past the class of Colm McFadden, Christy Toye, Martin McElhinney, Michael Langan and Daniel McLaughlin.
Malin and MacCumhaill’s are no strangers. They have met a number of times in the championship in recent years. The most recent of those was last year. Malin won that game in Connolly Park by a goal. The met a couple of weeks ago in the league. MacCumhaill’s won that game by two points and we can expect another close encounter on Saturday night with home advantage tipping it Malin’s way.
St Michael’s and Malin to win.