Declan Bonner insists that Division One survival isn’t the ‘be all and end-all’ for his Donegal side.
The new Donegal boss has seen his side win just once in their opening four League games – their last outing against Kildare in Ballyshannon.
Donegal had been competitive in their first three League games, but went down to narrow losses to Kerry, Galway and Dublin.
This Saturday evening, Donegal are in Omagh to joust with their old foes, Tyrone. Both are looking over the shoulders and in danger of the drop.
“Naturally enough we want to be competitive and win every game we got out to play, but we’re still on a learning curve,” Bonner said.
“We set our stall out at the start of the season that we knew the games that were coming early on were going to be fairly difficult.
“We knew we would be fielding a fairly inexperienced side. It wasn’t going to be the be all and end all if we didn’t stay in Division One.
“Do we want to be in Division One next year? Absolutely we do. But if it doesn’t happen it won’t be the end of the world.
“It’s down the road where we’ll be gauged when it comes to the Championship and our eyes are firmly fixed on that Cavan match. They’ve been going very well and are probably on the way back up to Division 1.”
Michael Murphy started a League game for the first time in 2018 against Kildare while the likes of Martin McElhinney, Neil McGee and Frank McGlynn have returned to the fold lately.
Paddy McGrath remains on-track for a return to action before the end of the League.
Although Bonner has seen Eoin McHugh, Peter Boyle and Michael Carroll depart the scene, the Donegal manager remains content with his lot.
He said: “The more experienced players are back in training now and adapting well and that’s important because we need that blend and balance between the youth and experience when we’re trying to change the way we play.
“It’s not going to happen in a week or a month, it’s going to take a period of time, but bit by bit they’re getting there.
“It’ll take a lot more time on the training ground, but all the lads are embracing it. Their attitude has been top class and they’re going about their business in a professional manner and that’s all you can ask for.”Tags: