DONEGAL 2-06, LAOIS 2-09: TWO goals in a minute threatened to upset a determined and tough Laois as Donegal went down by three points in this National League clash at O’Donnell Park in Letterkenny today.
It would have been rough justice on the visitors had they eventually drawn or lost this match, for it was they who had the bulk of the game.
For long periods of this match Jim McGuinness’s men seemed out-muscled and often out-classed.
Ross Munnelly has Laois two points up in the first ten minutes as Donegal wasted a number of chances, typified by a wide from Anthony Thompson who put a very scoreable kick wide.
It took the level head of Patrick McBrearty to settle Donegal as he hit two points to level the game, one of them a free from 30 metres out.
But David Conway went up the other end in the 21st minute to restore the lead before a completely unmarked Munnelly scored a minute later.
Conway then had a goal chance blocked – Colm Begley grabbed the breaking ball and fired over to chalk another point up for Laois.
In the 29th minute McBrearty scored again for Donegal, a point quickly cancelled out by Paddy Clancy.
And it was Clancy who was at the centre of all the attention just before half-time as Karl Lacey was adjudged to have fouled him in front of goal.
Paul Cahillane stepped up to fire the goal into the back of the net to give Laois a 1-06 to 0-04 half-time lead.
Donegal looked rattled as the second half began and their star performer from the first half McBrearty missed an easy chance in front of the posts as Laois raced further into the lead through scores from Conway and Darren Strong.
There are groans around O’Donnell Park in the 16th minute of the second half when Paddy Clancy rises highest to win possession, turns brilliantly and hits the back of the net.
But ten minutes later there is controversy as Donegal begin their fightback. Anthony Thompson claims a goal for Donegal – though the Laois players insist the ball didn’t cross the line.
Clearly rattled the visitors lost all concentration and in the 29th minute Neil Gallagher takes advantage of lapse defending to fire in a second Donegal goal.
O’Donnell Park was now much livelier but time had run out – and Donegal have lost again.
The rest of today’s National League results are below>
Allianz Football League Division 1
Donegal 2-06 Laois 2-09, Letterkenny, Result
Cork 4-11 Down 0-10, Pairc Ui Chaoimh, Result
Allianz Football League Division 2
Westmeath 0-05 Meath 0-17, Cusack Park, Result
Monaghan 0-17 Kildare 0-12, Clones, Result
Tyrone 2-15 Derry 0-09, Healy Park, Result
Galway 1-08 Louth 0-11, Pearse Stadium, Result
Allianz Football League Division 3
Offaly 1-06 Roscommon 0-12, Tullamore, Result
Tipperary 0-13 Antrim 1-12, Thurles, Result
Sligo 4-14 Wexford 1-17, Markievicz Park, Result
Allianz Football League Division 4
Limerick 1-13 London 1-07, Gaelic Grounds, Result
Carlow 0-13 Leitrim 2-09, Dr Cullen Park, Result
Fermanagh 0-11 Clare 0-08, Brewster Park, Result
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