IN FRONT of an otherwise deserted stand that doubled up as a makeshift dressing room, Donegal manager Declan Bonner could be satisfied with his team’s return to action.
By Chris McNulty at Sean MacCumhaill Park
The feeling and the surrounds are much different, changed vastly by the Covid-19 virus that has gripped the globe since they last played, some 32 weeks ago no.
Picture: Donegal manager Declan Bonner. Picture by Geraldine Diver
Usually, these meetings would bring Ballybofey to life. Now, the sound of silence swept across the old place.
Jerseys were draped on a railing at the front of the stand as the players, able to walk from the hotel through streets absent from the usual high-octane crowds.
“There was a real focus and a steely determination in there,” Bonner observed.
“We spoke about what it would be like and we are quite happy with the overall day.
“It was surreal coming in to play Tyrone. We were fit to walk from the hotel with not a being about.
“We had a job to do and I always knew that these lads were ready for a big challenge. They took on the challenge and met it. We’ll have a big, big test again in two weeks’ time.”
Then, they’ll joust in the Ulster Championship. That is if Covid-19 doesn’t result in the rug being pulled from beneath the GAA’s feet again.
After seven-and-a-half months, Donegal were back looking a side that will give retaining Ulster a real crack in the coming weeks.
Patrick McBrearty and Michael Langan were absent from this afternoon, but should return in a fortnight’s time.
Bonner said: “We’re happy with the performance and happy with the attitude of the lads. They were absolutely brilliant. We had seven months and that was a long, long time. We kept it going as best we could.
“It’s been great to get back out onto the pitch again. We have plenty to work on but, at the same time, it was good to get out and consolidate our position in Division 1.
“It was good to get on the pitch and get game time. The important thing for us was to come out and get the result, however we got it.”
Mogan netted an excellent goal on eight minutes and Brennan coolly finished five minutes into the second half.
Bonner said: “The goals were top class. They were both really good finishes. Our play in general wasn’t bad. We still have a bit to go. There was a natural bit of rustiness.”Tags: