Donegal supporters are asked to get Ballybofey this Saturday for the quarterfinal of the Eirgrid 2020 Ulster u20 championship and support this young side which will need all the help they can get against a top Monaghan outfit. it is clear that two teams with ambitions to do well in 2020 will clash when the Farneymen line up in Páirc Shéain Mhic Chumhaill for the throw-in at 2pm and by the end of the game one of these promising young sides will see the end of their 2020 involvement at a very early stage of the year.
Donegal came agonisingly close to potential success in the Leo Murphy Cup – a draw in their last game against Mayo seen the Connacht men top the group on points difference and progress to the final where they comprehensively beat Louth, winners of other Group. Donegal’s performance in the Leo Murphy Cup is all the more impressive when taking into account the absence through injury of Oisin Gallen and Conor O’Donnell, both of whom were on the Donegal senior panel in 2019. Shaun Paul Barrett, the Donegal manager, is not wasting time crying over spilt milk however, and the squad’s focus on this game is likely to be laser sharp – as SP put it when asked about the game “It’s win or nothing in Ballybofey”.
Monaghan have already tasted 2020 success in the Philly McGuinness Cup, winning the final against Longford in January. Andy Callan, the Monaghan manager, had three or four players training with the County panel in recent months and praised the senior manager Seamus McEnaney who he is working in tandem. However, despite the boost of victory in the Philly McGuinness Cup Callan is very wary of an impressive Donegal side and says it will take a massive performance to come out of Ballybofey with a win.
It has all the makings of a very close and hard fought encounter between two very skilful and highly motivated sides. As GAA slogan goes “nothing beats being there”. Tickets are available online for just €10.