Donegal secure must-win match over Kildare

Donegal 1-16 Kildare 3-7

By Alan Foley at Ballyshannon

Donegal came through something of a must-win to give themselves a fighting chance of Division 1 survival at Kildare’s expense at Ballyshannon.

Niall Kelly of Kildare celebrates alongside, Paul Brennan of Donegal, after scoring his side's second goal. Picture: Sportsfile

The side managed by Declan Bonner conceded a sixth minute goal to Daniel Flynn and the same player was adjudged to have been in the square three minutes later with Kildare dominating early on with the breeze.

However, Eoin Doyle, the Kildare captain, was dismissed on 16 minutes for not having a gumshield – his second yellow - having gone to the substitutes’ bench to request one but then instinctively fielding a kick-out from his goalkeeper Mark Donnellan.

Donegal got two late points from Patrick McBrearty to go in 1-3 to 0-5 down.

And with the wind, the home team managed to push ahead. Michael Murphy, Jamie Brennan and Eoin Ban Gallagher all scored by Niall Kelly’s goal at the other end meant the Leinster side were level at 0-11 to 2-5.

Again Donegal tapped over a succession of points, only for a third Kilcare goal on the hour from David Slatterty to level it at 3-4 to 0-15.

But Donegal, thanks to a fortunate goal from Ryan McHugh on 65 minutes, went onto win. McHugh swung a ball into the Kildare square aiming at the likes of Murphy and McBrearty, only for it to dip into Mark Donnellan’s top corner.

Scorers for Donegal: R McHugh 1-2, P McBrearty (1f) 0-4, M Murphy (1f) 0-3, H McFadden 0-2, J Brennan, O Mac Niallais, E Gallagher, N O’Donnell 0-1 each

Scorers for Kildare: D Flynn 1-1, N Kelly, D Slatterty 1-0 each, K Feely 0-3f, K Flynn, F Conway, J Byrne 0-1 each

Donegal: S Patton; E Gallagher, Caolan Ward, S McMenamin; R McHugh, P Brennan, T McClenaghan; H McFadden, O Mac Niallais; E Doherty, L McLoone, M McHugh; P McBrearty, M Murphy, J Brennan.

Subs: N O’Donnell for McClenaghan (h-t), N McGee for Ward (50), S McBrearty for Brennan (55), C McGonigle for M.McHugh (60), C Thompson for Mac Niallais (64), N Mullins for O’Donnell (69).

Kildare: M Donnellan; P Kelly, D Hyland, M O’Grady; C O’Donoghue, E Doyle, J Byrne; K Feely, T Moolick; F Conway, N Kelly, P Cribbin; B McCormack, D Flynn, P Brophy.

Subs: K Flynn for O’Donoghue (h-t), D Slattery for Cribbin (55), C Healy for N.Kelly (60), F Dowling for Conway (63), M Sherry for Moolick (69)

Referee: D Gough (Meath).

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