Big wins for Donegal and Meath


Gaelic Games round-up:Donegal put up a hugely impressive performance to hammer Derry by 2-13 to 0-9 in Ballybofey and set up an Ulster semi-final clash against Tyrone. And in the Leinster football quarter-final replay in Tullamore, Meath ran out 15 point winners in a 2-21 to 1-9 victory over Carlow.

Jim McGuinness’s Donegal side were on top from the start in a display full of energy and movement that Derry struggled all afternoon to deal with it.

The quality of their team work was summed up by their second goal at the start of the second half, winning the ball back from Derry in midfield before ploughing forward in numbers for Colm McFadden to finish off a flowing move.

McFadden also play a huge role in Donegal’s first goal after 31 minutes when he got in around the back of the Derry defence before supplying Leo McLoone with a simple chance to fire home.

Paddy Bradley was Derry’s only real threat, scoring three frees in the first half, while Donegal had nine different scorers during the match.

After leading 1-6 to 0-4 at the break, McFadden’s goal set the tone for a second half that Donegal completely dominated.

Their form should lead to a cracking Ulster semi-final with Tyrone in two weeks’ time in Clones, with McGuinness looking forward to the clash.

“It’s nice to get over the line and I suppose it sets up a big game in two weeks’ time. That was the number one thing coming in to the match. We’re happy that we’ve achieve that now and we’ll refocus the minds tomorrow morning for a two-week build-up again,” said McGuinness.

The Donegal manager thought his side were not clinical enough in the first half, but the second 35 minutes pleased him as they forced home their superiority.

“I wasn’t overly impressed at half-time. We felt we could have pushed on a wee bit more in the first half and asked a few more questions, but that didn’t really happen for us,” added McGuinness.

“In the second half they did that more and there was a wee bit more fluidity to our attacking and we got the scores as well which made the difference.”

In Tullamore, Carlowled 0-4 to 0-3 after 17 minutes before Meathgot their act together, scoring 1-8 without reply to go in 1-8 to 0-4 ahead.

Substitute Peader Byrne scored both of the Meath goals, his first coming just before the half hour when set up by Joe Sheridan.

Brian Farrell was in excellent scoring touch, contributing five points in the first half and finishing the game with 0-9 to his name.

Meath kept up their momentum in the third quarter to open, and although they eased up towards the end of the game, there was still time for Byrne to grab a second goal after sending a weak kick-out back into the Carlow net.

Meath will now play Kildare or Offaly in the Leinster semi-final on July 1st, while Carlow join Derry in Monday’s draw for the first round of qualifiers.