Donegal v Antrim The Championship

Donegal v Antrim

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Good evening, welcome to the Championship. Welcome to full


coverage of Donegal against Antrim. When it's all over, we will pour


over it all in the company of Oisin, All-Ireland win back in the day,


with Armagh. This park has become a fortress, they haven't lost in the


Championship since 2010. For that reason, they go into today's game as


overwhelming favourites. Your match commentary team, Martin Clarke


alongside Thomas Niblock. COMMENTATOR: Let's look first at


Donegal. They have an experienced defence. But one change, Mulligan


will make his debut. He comes in at forward and replaces Patrick Purdy.


As for Antrim, Chris Kerr, the captain, is in goal. A midfield


partnership of Sean McMahon Steven Beattie. Up front, the danger man,


McCann, the only survivor from the 2009 Donegal victory.


The referee today, Paddy Newman, he is from Roscommon. His third year as


a Championship referee. Today is his first ever Championship game in


Ulster. Big crowd in Macau Park. The winner will play Derry or Tyrone in


the semifinal. All ages in the crowd. Most expecting a Donegal win.


Championship 2017 is about to begin for Antrim and Donegal. The referee


throws in the ball, we are away. Straightaway, the ball into the


hands of Donegal's Ryan McHugh. Under no great panic, he pushes it


backwards. As Donegal on the attack, early doors here in Ballybofey. Ryan


McHugh is the man outside of him. He decides to go himself. He passes the


ball to Michael Carroll. Frank McGinn. Straightaway, Donegal just


inside the 45. Can he get the angle? The tackling. Forced Jimmy Brennan


out wide. Chance for a point to Donegal. Scoring the opening, the


shot comes in from the left foot, and it was wide. A clever move by


Donegal. It is a shot keirin Thomson has been nailing off that left foot.


He has had a superbly campaign, he will be disappointed. We will see a


lot that patient type of play from Donegal today as Antrim have numbers


back. Antrim, way with it. They have drawn their first free. Fitzpatrick


the man going down. Number 11. He has certainly had a busy week.


Suspended for 48 weeks. That is what everyone bought on Wednesday. But by


the end of the week that was crushed, and he is eligible to play.


-- it was quashed. A free for Antrim on the 45, taken by that one --


their corner forward, McGourty. And Antrim have the lead. Beautiful kick


by CJ McGourty. We have watched him do that for a number of seasons now.


He had a fantastic league campaign. A significant breeze. Favourite of


Antrim in this half. CJ use that very well. Donegal and kick-out. On


the attack. A man inside, Jason McGee, he finds Frank McGlynn, ever


present in that defence of Donegal. Martin Reilly goes again. Eventually


he finds Ryan McHugh. Three different Antrim players. Play


continues. Play out on that far side, it's the


cornerback. Won by Gallagher, chance for an early goal for Donegal for


the briefest of seconds. Michael Murphy picks it up. Chance of a goal


for Donegal! And a last-ditch tackle just about does enough. Well, a


scramble in the Antrim defence. Tried to turn defence into attack.


The ball down the left-hand side in the hands of Mark Sweeney, a former


think Bridget is club man, now playing his club football in Dublin.


-- Saint Bridget's club man. Wonderful kick, Antrim increased


their lead. Superb score, lovely little pass from Mark Sweeney, what


a great counterattack, bodies on the line from Antrim, you can see them


falling over and bring themselves in front of the ball to prevent bad


goal from Donegal, which they did. The goal was an -- that goal. Look


at the desperation in the defending. A beautiful point by McCann after a


lovely pass inside. Great confidence builder for Antrim. In the meantime,


Donegal won the kick-out. Adams has plenty to ponder. Two points to no


score, four minutes gone. That is McCann's kick, just using the


breeze, got a job on his marker, don't have to over kick the ball,


just floated up into the wind and the breeze has done the rest from


both McGourty's point and from McCann. McCann is the only link from


the 2009 surprise win between Antrim and Donegal here at Ballybofey. That


man was a teenager at that time. Playing one of his first years for


Donegal seniors. Five points that day, it wasn't enough. A chance of


scoring this afternoon. Michael Murphy, as you would expect.


Fantastic take. Murphy likes drawing them in from that side. Some people


would say, you know, that favours a free kick. I personally like hitting


them the opposite side. I have seen them strike the ball beautifully,


especially here in Ballybofey. No surprise he is the first scorer for


Donegal. Matthew Fitzpatrick was under pressure when he won the ball


initially, took the return pass and kicked it away. Donegal have


possession inside their own half. They build from the back. Kieron


Ward taking no chances. Passes it to Jason McGee. The ball in the hands


of Martin Reilly. Here comes to an ward again. Goes past his player.


Pops it outside. Donegal asking questions of this


Antrim defence, but so far the trim defence are answering every one of


them. Sean McVeigh, the Antrim midfielder. This passes it inside.


McCann still going, chances of a score on the left foot. McCann


knocked it over the bar. Fantastic counterattack yet again from Antrim.


One thing we did know, if Antrim were going to be competitive and


potentially think about winning this game, they have to be clinical.


Three attacks for three scores, a great conversion rate. Even turning


it an attack into a shot, never mind three points, will be most pleasing


for Antrim so far. Donegal on the attack, the ball in the familiar


hands of Brian Moote you. Can he bring in the goods today? McHugh


goes for it. -- Ryan McHugh. Donegal ball. Michael Murphy, number 14 on


his back. Expecting to see him operating war around the middle. --


more around the middle. Keirin Thomson has plenty of confidence to


go around his man. There was a foul at the very end. It looked as if you


McFadden was fouled. The referee says there is going to be a free in


to Donegal. Some of the supporters. Perhaps not the start they wanted.


3-1. We will have a look at that again. It did appear he tripped over


himself. Just one of those ones where he is moving forward. Hugh


McFadden, a fortunate free kick for Donegal. No doubt Murphy will stick


it over the bar. He was going to put it on the ground but he will just


take it out of his hands now. Taking it across the bounce. A chance to


narrow the gap, Michael Murphy. Captain of a Donegal team that has


won three Ulster championships, he would like to get to another final.


Loc cit over the bar. Just one point between them. Donegal will crowded


out. Antrim's defending has been disciplined and they have been able


to hit Donegal on the counter. Antrim have really started this game


well. Superb catch in the middle of the field. That time it was Stephen


Beattie. The ball pumped into the area where McCann is very dangerous.


Runs into it, confidence to take his dummy. On the right foot, he scored


a wonderful point with his left foot a moment ago and almost got another


one with his right. He has kicked one with his right and one with his


left, that was a fantastic piece of play. McCann looks free, he has been


carrying injuries for a few seasons and you can tell he is really on


fire today. He is gearing, his speed and creativity can be dangerous dog


bite Michael Murphy knocks it into the corner for Jamie Brennan. -- he


can be dangerous. Shot from distance from our way out. You McFadden, too


much Perl on it and it goes wide. Martin, from an Antrim perspective,


those managers, Adams and Fitzsimmons, everybody expects


Donegal to win today. To see his team starting well, leading and


playing with confidence, it must be a massive boost? It is, and Antrim


over the years have never feared anyone. They come here expecting to


put in a performance where they are competitive in every game, but they


ended up getting relegated. Adams and the Antrim players will not fear


Donegal in any way. You can tell at the start of this game that is the


case. Hugh McFadden was fouled he hit that shot but the referee brings


it back for the initial infringement, it is going to be


another free for Donegal on the 13 metre line. This should be 3-3.


A big crowd in Ballybofey. Most Rob Lee expecting Donegal to win. A


wonderful start from Antrim. -- most probably expecting Donegal to win.


The reverential hush in Ballybofey. Left footed free straight over the


bar, three points each, ten minutes gone. Yes, it is interesting that


the three Donegal freezer have all been very close to goal. Some of the


match, even that one it wasn't a particularly obvious free kick.


Donegal have been very happy to have those three scores on the board


because there attacks haven't been as creative as we know they can be.


Chris Kerr's goalkick way in the middle of the field high, the


breaking ball is won by Donegal inside of the 45-metre line. Help is


found in the form of Ryan McHugh, left footed, tries to go for it and


bounces just in front of Chris Kerr, who used every inch of his six foot


four frame to get his fingertips on that. Always dangerous to let the


ball bounced in front of you, but he did well, manage the situation.


Antrim build again from the back. BT finds Matthew Fitzpatrick, who


gives it inside, continues the run, doesn't get it back. -- Stephen


Beattie. Bradley tries to switch the play. Antrim lose possession. But


they have won a free just outside of the 45. And another opportunity to


go in front. CJ was out well in front. He took the ball well at the


second attempt. He will have every confidence in himself to say all


this over. He had the first kicks, the first score of the game for


Antrim from an almost identical position where he used the win to


his advantage -- the wind. Although it is outside the 45 metres, you


would expect CJ to put this one point already in this game, going


for number two. Curls in, that's fabulous. That was sensational. We


were right behind that, Thomas, just beautiful, the way he judged where


to stop the ball outside of the left-hand post. It drifted in right


between the goals, just a phenomenal point, you can't underestimate what


a great strike that is and how clinical Antrim have been. And proof


if ever it was needed to suggest the ultimate influence of having a good


free taker to take the manage in those situations. Absolutely right.


Donegal on the attack. He is made e-commerce thought about moving its


store -- forward but it's that goes back. Michael Murphy tackled from


behind by Shaun McRae. The referee with no hesitation gives a free in


to Donegal from about 24 metres out -- Sean Abbott raised a point I


would like to see Michael Murphy do a lot more of that, on the charge,


demanding the ball. The angle of his run was fantastic, he was fed the


ball and charged for goal, there is only one way to stop him and that is


to bring him down. I just think that while he is doing so much heavy work


round the middle, if he can do that more and more, Donegal will go into


this season's Championship. A fantastic start by Murphy, really


leading from the front. The three is taken by Ciaran Thomson. Just


settling himself -- for free. Looking at the target, plenty of


height. Over the bar! Donegal's fourth point today. All four of them


coming from frees. All four of them from scoring range, freeze for a


player of Thomson and Murphy's standard. Playing into the breeze


they would be content with chipping away and having four points on the


board in the 13th minute. Four points apiece, 30 minutes gone. A


free in to Donegal yet again. Owen Gallagher drifting forward,


creeps inside the 45. The ball in the hands of Jason McGee, transfers


it to Ciaran Thomson, his partner in midfield. The shot is over the bar.


Donegal take the lead for the first time in their first points from


play. It is that man, Ciaran Thompson. He scored his free kicks


with the inside of the brute, this is a difficult skill, the breeze is


blowing into his face, he drilled underneath the ball, you see how low


he put his leg to the ground, fantastic contact on the ball and a


great point. What a fabulous catch by Matthew Fitzpatrick! His shot


just wasn't as good as the initial cat. He climbed highest in front --


the initial catch. Down on the ground he tried to toe tap it right


into the screens on, something you very readily see in Gaelic football.


-- very rarely. Donegal on the attack, the ball in the hands of


Michael Carroll, pretends to go one way and goes another. Jason McGee


looking for options left on side. Non-ahead of him so he decides to go


backwards. There is the wrong from Frank McGlynn, what can he create?


Passing it to Michael Murphy, just takes on the player, wins the free.


The referee looks at it. Shaun McRae, it judged to have committed


the foul. -- Sean McVeigh. Murphy wanted the


ball to go forward. We see many teams are happy to part the ball


sideways, backwards. Murphy drove the ball forward, great to see him


do that, he is such a great athlete, so dangerous. Sean McVeigh has his


hands full trying to contain him at the minute. Ciaran Thompson, an


opportunity to increase his scoreline. From Donegal, three from


27 metres out. Swings the left but at it. Over the bar it goes, 6-4.


Donegal making Antrim pay, particularly from frees. Donegal


committed one foul in this game. As for Antrim? They have committed


five. That is the difference. I would say, I noticed it is Paddy's


first game in an Ulster Championship, some of those frees


you might not get off other referees, but let's commend the free


taking and the general point taking of these two sides. To have ten


points on the board in the first 15 minutes, you don't see it very often


in an Ulster Championship. Midfielder Stephen Beattie, he has


found a point. A former Antrim hurler had the decision at the


beginning of the season to go with the hurlers or the foot ball,


decided to go with the football. He hits a lovely point from the queue


angle, 6-5, just the minimum between them. High ball into the heart of


the Antrim defence. The saffron is come away with it, the saffron is or


green today. -- the saffrons or green today. Keirin Ward, -- Caolan


Ward, can he find his man? Lockdown, comes off one of the Antrim players.


The umpire suggests it is a 45. I believe McCann played for that


committee was outnumbered along the end line. He kicked it at the


Donegal defence with the hope that he would win a 45, intelligent play.


It gives an opportunity from a gaudy to keep up this great accuracy


Antrim have had so far today. -- for CJ McGroarty. It is going to be 45,


taken by CJ McGroarty. Trying to judge where the wind is


blowing. Whatever slight advantage it may have, it looks like it is


going out this first half. Off the tee that. -- off the deck. A foul


has been committed, pulled back. Play will not continue, a free out


for Donegal. Fantastic catch by Chris Kerr, you want your big men


under the crossbar to save, pretty much he saved a point. Fantastic


leap, fantastic catch, good effort by CJ McGroarty but great work from


Murphy. Great catch from Murphy. Donegal on the attack. The ball of


Caolan Ward pulls it out to Jason McGee. Michael Murphy. Two or three


phases of play before Murphy gets on the ball, tucked the ball on the


ground. Sean McMahon Egypt to get things back and running. -- Sean


McVeigh eager to get things back and running. Antrim struggling to get


the ball out of their own defence. He played from the back, Conor


Hamill. The full-back, Patrick Gallagher, just about everyone at


Ballybofey thought that was going to be impact, but the challenge didn't


happen. Quick turn, on the left foot, the umpires look at one


another and the ball goes wide. Lovely crossfield pass to McGourty.


40 was under more pressure than he was. He would usually put them under


the left foot. Paddy McGrath, fair pressure. First wide for Antrim.


Donegal on the attack yet again. The ball is with cornerback Gallagher.


It will be a free out. Here is the full forward, Brendan Bradley.


Centre halfback, the St John's club man. Passes it outside. The ball


finds its way to Brendan Bradley again, switches the play again.


Matthew Fitzpatrick. One a Sigurdsson cup with St Mary's just a


couple of months ago. High ball played into the square. McGourty


with the shot! It goes along the face of the goal and wide! What an


opportunity. Well, the Antrim coaching staff knew


that was a real opportunity. CJ McGourty gets it. Just misjudged it.


Great movement by McGourty across the face to get into that space. The


side of the ground. Again he snatched at it. It was not an easy


opportunity with the angle closing in and Paddy McGrath right on him,


but you would expect CJ to hit the target that, he will be really


disappointed with that. Lovely movement by Antrim, getting in


behind, you don't often see that. Over the past three minutes, Donegal


have had three attacks. The referee has blown the whistle three times.


Two free is going out today, that was the third. Matthew Fitzpatrick.


Gives it to his cornerback, Peter Healy. Declan Lynch has it. It is in


the comfortable hands of McCann. Take a bounce. The referee says no,


it is going to be a free out because he was using his other hand to push


the player away. One point between the teams. 21 minutes gone. Those


supporters might just be happy enough. Yes, they will. They've made


the long journey across here to Ballybofey. They saw their minors


have a fantastic win after extra time. We can see the Antrim seniors


have really brought it right up to Donegal. Donegal on the charge yet


again. Brian McHugh at the end of that one, opportunity presents


itself, just the wrong side of the post. The ball goes wide. McHugh was


looking for a man inside, he wanted the goal chance. When it was gone he


went for a point, he was under extreme pressure when he tried to


hook that back out over his shoulder. Just wide. Brian McHugh,


an old-style, former Young Player of the Year, terrific young footballer


Ryan McHugh. Antrim in possession, the ball with wing halfback Paddy


McAleer. Tackled well by Murphy, McVeigh goes charging. Here come


Donegal... Martin Reilly. Nice babe of the shoulder from


Ciaran Thompson, who has been very impressive in the opening 23


minutes. Hugh McFadden from a long way out.


Super score. Fantastic score. McFadden is trying to lift the crowd


as well. From that distance, the wind has died down a little in the


last few minutes. Even to take the shot and was fairly ambitious, but


to execute it was superb skill. Donegal lead by two points, their


biggest lead so far in this game. 23 minutes gone. Chris Kerr will take


the kicked out. Looking for someone. Hits it short, finds his man, as is


the way in modern day Gaelic football.


Paddy McNair ride, moving forward at speed -- Paddy McBride. Bradley has


another man inside him. Stephen Beattie going for a second point,


goes for the shot at the wrong side of the post. Another wide for


Antrim, therefore so far. Yes, they started the game so well -- their


fourth so far. In terms of converting opportunities, they have


just fall away. Donegal have been able to get a bit more pressure on


their shots. McCann and McGourty have not been as isolated. The shots


have been tougher, Antrim will be looking to get another score. It is


an advantage the wind has given them. Caolan -- Ciaran Thompson find


his partner. Antrim or on the attack again. McGourty out in front of his


man. The ball was too far on top of them. Instead, Donegal go. This is


where Donegal are really dangerous, on the counterattack. The pass a


little further in front than perhaps McHugh intended. The referee says it


was a push and it will be a free in for Donegal. The ball kicked


backwards. Hugh McFadden passed the ball


inside. A shot comes in. The shot isn't on target, a wafer Donegal. --


a wide. Their fourth so far. What will be under management by feeling


right now? They will be relatively happy, they have got the faces of


Donegal and force them to shoot from distance, they've had some great


turnovers. Early in the game they were able to isolate their two


threats, McCann and McGourty inside. They will be concerned in the last


few minutes that they have been taking backwards and not been able


to get the crossfield ball, the early ball into the inside forwards,


as McGourty is down the line for this one. A great kick-out for Chris


Kerr, Brendan Bradley took the mark. The advantage is that nobody is


around to dispossess. The disadvantage of taking, gives


Donegal an extra few seconds to get everybody back. Perhaps it won't


battle. The referee says it was a foul on the early infringement


brings the playback. The Antrim are giving as good as they get. That


shouldn't really be a surprise. So many people were saying they didn't


have a chance today. Perhaps people aren't surprised. I think for regard


how will be a bit concerned about, we see again -- Gallagher will be


concerned. They during the fire. It seems a little more open. I know it


is early days in the Championship and a long time since the league,


but Donegal seem potentially a little lacking in the structures


around their defensive game that they've had over the last number of


years. Oh, brilliant point! Superb free from CJ McGourty, absolutely


brilliant. 7-6. The Antrim management console, and probably the


answer is, brilliant score from McGourty! When he is confident, he's


brilliant stop might yes, he is. You almost knew he was going to but that


of despite it being a difficult free. The break of ball goes the way


of Donegal. The crowd energised by that. You can hear them just a


little bit louder. Hugh McFadden, partially blocked down. The ball


eventually find its way to the other side of the field. The school comes


in from distance, but it's not a score because it has gone wide. So


will the score. Keirin -- Ciaran Thompson is the man who kicked that


one. He has made it five. He was on for quite some time. The partial


block from the Antrim defender was able to just get the Antrim defence


back, set up enough to put pressure on to make that particular shot.


Michael Murphy does well to win the break of ball yet again. Sean


McVeigh chasing him, goes back another player, Frank McGlynn.


Could Donegal, the kings of patience, take their chance, just


wait for somebody, a little bit of space for some of the length,


run-through, I should say. A little too long without hand telling, it is


going to be a free, and taken quickly. Brendan Bradley with 14 on


the back of his church playing a deeper role during this game. -- on


the back of his shirt. Fitzpatrick evades the tackle. Fitzpatrick still


going, switches the play. Can McGourty get there? He does.


And already you can see that Gallagher has picked up CJ McGourty.


It was initially Paddy McGrath. Peter Middleton, a man outside him,


still going, Donegal, scrambling everybody back, 13 players inside


their own 45. This is what Donegal are waiting for, the turnover from


Antrim, someone to misplace the pass, then you see them slingshot


forward. So far and should have kept the ball really well. McCann didn't


get his butt on to the Boyle, and it bounced into the hands of the


goalkeeper. Ryan McHugh has two Antrim players


for company, there are still going, still charging against this defence


but gives the ball away. Antrim come away with it, Patrick Gallagher goes


for the kick pass. The full-back kicking the ball, something we


rarely see, well known by Brendan Bradley, filed in the process of


doing so, the free taking quickly. Fitzpatrick, lovely lazy style when


he runs, seems to glide by players, did well to recover that situation.


That was a heavy challenge on Mark Sweeney.


He looks in a lot of pain there. It was a hefty challenge and those ones


particularly when players go down with their heads over the ball, you


really expose yourself, and it was a robust challenge by McGee. He is


aggressive, and certainly the ball was one, but it will make no


difference, that is very sore in the head region. The game will be held


up and rightly so. Mark Sweeney was sitting up.


Ponder for Adams and Fitzsimmons, just a point behind with half an


hour gone. -- plenty to ponder. I guess this is the last five minutes


were Antrim are thinking, we are doing well, in this game, let


Donegal snatch a goal in the end of the first half and it changes the


complexion at half-time. Antrim are not trying to hold onto the lead,


though. Hyperlink on the Chancellor Antrim goal, Fitzpatrick with the


shot, and it is wide. The reaction tells its own story. What an


opportunity for Antrim, and the ball goes wide. It was, just miss kicked


shot from ham more about failing, and it was an acute angle but what


an opportunity, did everything right. Antrim come away with it


again, Sweeney with ball in hand, referee says no foul. This is where


Donegal are dangerous, on the counterattack, driving forward with


plenty of numbers, yellow jerseys everywhere, the bowlers into Murphy,


an opportunity for a scholar, there is the kick and there is the go. And


you just had the feeling it was coming, those last few minutes


before the end of the first half, dangerous minutes. Antrim had the


opportunity to find the back of the net, they didn't take it, Donegal


did, and now it is 1- 07. What a great run.


Fantastic car and got the crowd going. Gallagher introduced as a


late replacement to McGourty, raised eyebrows inside this stadium. Antrim


on the attack again. The shot again dropped short.


Donegal have it. On the attack yet again, 1- 0726 points. The smaller


the margin where Gaelic football points can turn. Donegal have it


again, it is that man, Jamie Brennan yet again, is he fouled? The referee


says no. He has stopped play -- the referee has


stopped play because Donegal player is on the ground. Great defending by


Conor Hamill on that occasion, lovely clean hand on the ball and


then fouled. Brendan would have been -- Brennan would have been confident


Hattie got past Hamill but he made the file. Lovely tackling as we see


there. Clean as it gets. Great tackle. A forward making that tackle


almost makes it even more impressive. It does, and as well as


that, if you turn the ball over in your own you can convert a turnover


into a score or if you rely on getting turnovers in your defence


that is a long way up the field, so that is what managers want and the


team love seeing, winning the ball back, particularly if it is a


forward, shows everyone is buying into the team ethos of hard work.


Declan Lynch. Passes it forward to the court of


Patrick Gallaher taking the ball perhaps 30 yards. Here is BT, away


on the left-hand side, decides to go backwards. The ball in the pores of


Gallagher. Antrim just trying to create that space, that opportunity.


Sweeney from a distance, tackled from behind, the referee says no


free. Kick out short. Donegal yet again on


the attack, Martin Riley seeps into the 45. Goes for the shot. Jamie


Brennan is having a real influence in this game. Fantastic score. I


love the way he used the hand passed by McGee, get it into the man on


form who has just scored a goal. Fantastic finish from that side of


the ground as well, a real treat for the fans on that side of the


stadium, a band roaring before the umpire reached for his white flag.


We talked about the five minutes before the end of the first half,


just a point separating the sides, and those five minutes are up. It is


just a completely different team talk at half-time. It is, but you


have to say the good teams wait for their moment, since an opportunity,


and Donegal have put one on the board. They'd probably now put in a


match-winning lead considering how well they play in the second half of


games. They have the breeze behind them now. As much as Antrim could


have clung on, it was only an inch or two across away from the post,


but they are good teams and sense their moments, they pile on the


scores and Donegal will be satisfied with the scoreboard and maybe more


so than their overall performance. One Antrim player is a cause for


concern, on the ground receiving medical treatment at the moment. We


will wait to see just what is happening. It looks like it is


Fitzpatrick on the ground. I think it is Sean McGreevy, former Antrim


goalkeeper, trying to take off his gloves. It is not him, it looks


nothing like him! My apologies to both men! This will be a worrying


sign for Antrim because Mathew Fitzpatrick has been good when he


has got on the ball. The dispossession tackle earlier was


because of him. He would be a big loss stop new he is a great player,


lovely to watch on the ball. He can pass the ball and take his own score


but this looks like a significant injury, whether it is me or lower


leg, they have called for the stretcher. Very disappointing for


Antrim and Fitzpatrick. It has been a bad week for Mathew Fitzpatrick, a


very disappointing one on all fronts, but he got the opportunity


to play today. I know he was dying to play in this championship game


but his afternoon has been ended early. We are into injury time in


the first half. Ryan McHugh just gives him a pat. Very disappointing


for Fitzpatrick, Antrim and bad management team because they will


know what Rossi will be. And massive loss, you don't want any player to


graft but particularly such a significant character. The way he


was playing, helped inspire the team, so it will sink their hearts


to see him go off in such pain. In -- it unfortunately looks to be a


significant injury, whether it is his knee, it is very early but there


is concern for them there, sad, you know? Let's have a look at that


again, there is Fitzpatrick going in for it, goes down, straightaway,


grabs it, difficult to tell. Let's look at it again, and knock to his


ankle and his knee. Straightaway he grabs his right ankle. It could be


his ankle or his knee or both. We just don't know, it is early days,


but, great to hear him getting a round of applause, but it wasn't an


incident that was particularly unfair as a challenge, it was just a


greasy surface. Well-wishers turned that it -- Matt Fitzpatrick.


Replacing Fitzpatrick is number 17, Kevin O'Boyle, the former Antrim


captain. No more as a defender of attacker so perhaps a train jerked


-- change of strategy from the Antrim management.


CJ McGourty is on the 65 metre line, and is he going to have a go from


here? I don't think so. I don't think I ever saw a kick scored with


the breeze not being overly significant from here. We will see.


There is map Fitzpatrick -- Mathew Fitzpatrick. Sad tight site to see


Gaelic football. CJ McGourty did hit it short. Antrim on the attack yet


again, McBride goes for the shot, it is acute, goes for it, and another


wide for Antrim. That is their seventh so far today in comparison


to Donegal's five. They have had opportunities. Yes, and that is the


thing Rory Gallagher will be most focused on, trying to rectify in the


second half, the fact that Antrim have got in behind the defence so


often, but so many shots off. The half-time whistle goes. The score is


Donegal one goal and eight points, Antrim six points. Supporters of


both Donegal and Antrim needing their hats and sunglasses as the sun


has come out to play. Beautiful sunshine, Donegal and Antrim


supporters making the trip, all of them hoping to be in the next round


of the championship and play either Derry or Tyrone for a place in the


Ulster cup. Rory Gallagher, undefeated as assistant manager and


manager of this Donegal team. He will be hoping that run continues.


Play has restarted, the second half under way and Antrim when the


breaking ball. Straightaway, Mark Sweeney one back. Rory McCann gives


it to Sweeney, knew it would be blocked down. Sean McVeigh, gets it


to Sweeney, passes it backwards. Trying to take on McGee, referee


says it is free to Donegal. CJ McGourty will take this one.


Confirmation of the teams going along the bottom of your screens,


and it has been confirmed to the BBC that Matt Fitzpatrick has sustained


ligament damage to the ankle. Free taken by McGourty off the


ground, curling, doesn't have the distance or direction. Michael


Murphy not for the first time today catches it inside the six yard box.


Donegal on the counterattack. Breaking at speed. Cheon world. Now


it is Ciaran Thompson. Trying to create space to get the


shot off and Antrim are defending well, CJ McGourty back in his own 45


there, ball goes loose, Donegal win it again, referee says no foul but


eventually blows the whistle and the free will be given. 47 metres from


goal. Yes, a strange start to the second half. A lot of mistakes, a


lot of ball in dispute, and you can see that particular passage of play


probably was a free kick in the end, and Murphy who caught that all under


his own goalposts from the McGourty 45 metre free kick, charged up the


field inspirationally, and is now with the wind at his back. We see


him put this one in the ground and it is not beyond him. Michael Murphy


just picking the grass from his studs. He has been in this situation


so many times before, ball behind the 45, on the ground, goes for the


shot, curls, doesn't have a direction. The man is human after


all! Off the ground, curling, was never really making it. And it is


one .0 8-6 points. Ball out of play, will be taken by Donegal.


Paddy McGrath goes past his man, almost as though he wasn't there,


Frank McGlynn gets it perhaps fortunately, McGlynn still going,


trying to find Riley, Edi was. Now with Thompson. Back with Riley


again, here is McGlynn, continued his run, space, could be tempted to


go for the score, over the bar it goes, Frank McGlynn. Round of


applause from the Donegal support, his championship debut made in 2006


and still going strong in 2017. Fantastic by McGlynn, the way he


ghosts inside, it's not like the opposition don't know about it, he


has done it so long, but the timing and composure on his weaker left


foot as well, fantastic scoring an important were Donegal. Murphy


driving at this Antrim defence. Loses possession, Antrim come away


with it, trying to break at speed. Here is Kevin O'Boyle, and allows it


to bounce in front of him, from Antrim captain, just passes it


inside. -- former Antrim captain. He is Sweeney. Passes it back.


Peter Healy tries to find Bradley, who in turn finds Kevin O'Boyle,


will Eoin Doyle go for it? Bounced it twice. -- will Ogogo for it. The


right decision but perhaps not the right man. A wasted opportunity,


that passwords on, badly gave it to a Boyle and there was another chance


for a go if Antrim played faster and properly. They only have themselves


to blame for that file, and Donegal can build against a white Paddy


McGrath, more championship starts than any other player, currently


playing Gaelic football. So consistent, he offers so much


defensively. When he gets on the ball he is neat and tidy and uses it


well and that -- that stat doesn't surprise me, a key member of that


team. Donegal just relaxing into this attack, it almost seems. So


comfortable in possession. They eventually win the free, and this


will be a substitution coming on, Jack Dowling from the Saint Bridges


club in Belfast, his father played for Armagh back in the day, and Jack


very much with Antrim, six foot four frame, I would imagine he would go


straight into the middle of the field. He will, I played alongside


him at Queens University for a couple of years, he will be throwing


himself around, a big man as you can see, plays without aggression, but


plenty of skill as well, unfortunate not to start but has almost a full


half to impose himself. William McCann then man taken off, so it


will be a free for Donegal -- Ruairi McCann. In similar position to the


one he missed a few minutes ago. Retford, plenty of distance to spare


and straight between the posts. Fantastic kick, and that ability to


self correct from the previous one, almost an identical position,


studied further towards the right-hand post and a great kick.


Instead of dropping his head, he learned from his mistakes. Great


kick. Antrim on the attack. McVeigh passes the ball to Declan Lynch. Now


Stephen Beatty. Passes backwards team that they again and here is


Jack Dowling, and there is Matt Fitzpatrick, and unfortunately


Fitzpatrick is using a crutch. Thankfully it seems to be walking to


an extent. We wish him well in his recovery. Good to see him come back


out and support the team, get round to the bench. I have had an ankle


ligament injury myself, needed surgery, and it is nasty and will


probably be a season over, but thankfully it hasn't been more


severe than that for Fitzpatrick. Murphy goes charging in but it goes


to ground and with three yellow jerseys surrounding him, eventually


the ball on the ground. Free out, Ryan McHugh takes it. Ward finds


McGlynn. Here is the cornerback, Gallagher. Again, passes it


backwards. Donegal very much in control. On the attack yet again,


the shot from distance, blocked down. Antrim come away with it.


Patrick Gallagher now has his hands on the ball. Passes it back. They


tried to break out this left-hand side. Donegal with the high press,


trying to prevent Antrim coming out of defence, that is brilliant play.


Paddy McAleer still going, passes it inside to Conor Hamill, you could do


with support, finds it. Badly. The referee blows his whistle, stops the


play. He has to stop play because Donegal player is down. It is


Brennan, he looks as if he has done something to his right shoulder


during the tackle, he is in a great amount of pain. Right in front of us


here, as soon as he went to ground he was rolling in agony, and it


looks like a serious shoulder injury to the man who has scored the only


goal and has had a great game so far. That looks so. -- it looks


painful. He has made a brilliant impact since coming into this


Donegal senior team. Concerned supporters, but all will be happy to


see Brennan back on his feet. Will he be able to continue? The pat on


the back suggests he will. We can see it just as he was tackling, he


lands on the right shoulder, you can get a stinger sometimes where you


just get that pain and it eases once you get up and get moving, and


that's what they are going to try with him. Certainly looks painful. A


change in the Donegal team, Eoin McHugh coming on, cousin of Brian,


cousin of Mark, nephew of Martin. The man taken off is Mulligan, the


late replacement for Patrick McBrearty. So a debut for him.


Antrim in possession, Sweeney gives it to the long-running Jack Dowling


who is chopped down as he attacked the ball, and a free for Antrim.


They haven't scored in the second half. They could really do with a


point here because the longer that goes on, it could turn into an awful


disaster for Antrim. Absolutely. CJ will hope to put this over the bar.


Good courage by Dowling, he put his head low over the ball, and got a


leg to the head for his troubles, and a free kick in. Antrim


definitely need this, the game needs Antrim to get on the scoreboard


here. Seven points between the teams. CJ McGourty either the


target. -- I was at the target. Kicks it over the crossbar, deficit


reduced to six. Antrim's first score in 20 minutes. As we said they


definitely need it. Nicely floated in as well by McGourty offer left


footer, bloated in really nice, and Antrim will hope to build on this


but you get the sense that Donegal are waiting to pounce and kill this


came off. Brilliant catch from Jason McGee. Takes the mark, hits it


quickly, Hugh McFadden, had an impact on the first half, tries to


play it inside but the referee says it was a foul, just a little earlier


before he hit the ball inside. A free in for Donegal. He pulled it


back for the advantage there, within the five seconds, the advantage


didn't accrue. Again you would expect Donegal to take this one. It


was probably a free kick there as they were charging in. Good


refereeing. Chris Kerr between the sticks, Antrim captain this year.


Michael Murphy, Donegal captain since he was 22. In spite of all he


has achieved he is still just 27 years old. Remarkable maturity, and


an impressive young man. Rounds of applause suggest the free was


successful. It was. 1.1 1-7 points. Rory Gallagher, almost looks as


though he is playing every pass, taking every hit on the sideline.


Jack Dowling goes up for it, gets its hands on, the referee says it


will be a free end for Antrim. Sean McVeigh will take it, hits it back.


Takes the return pass. McVeigh still going, passes it inside, finds the


centre halfback. Declan Lynch, now Paddy McBride, nice ball inside to


the path of Bradley who goes for the shot and again it drops short.


Donegal now have time to build from the back. McGee, looks for the


return pass, doesn't get it. McHugh gives it to his midfielder, that was


Jason McGee, now Donegal have the ball inside the 13, playing it out,


however. Michael Murphy. Trying to get into a bit of action, Murphy


knocks McVeigh out of his way, goes for the score. Well, that is what it


is. Pushes McVeigh out of his way, lies back, just throws the boot at


it, his fifth point today. He goes from strength to strength.


Fantastic, and he has done so much today, taking the game on, and


proactive, McVeigh went with him at that time he made the move. He just


shrugged McVeigh, who was a big man, and hit that shot and you knew when


he got that he would nail the squirrel from so far out, and he is


really stepping up today, Michael Murphy, what a point. Great score


from the Donegal captain leading by example, Bailey is, in the middle of


things yet again, going for the catch, doesn't get it, breaking


ball, referee says a foul, free into Donegal. Karl Lacey has come on as


substitute replacing Michael Carroll. There is Karl Lacey, the


year, first played for Donegal in 2006, not a bad man to bring him on.


Fantastic stunt to have them. The retirements Donegal have had have


been documented. Some that the boy perhaps have their best football


behind the moment is a chance for the new guys to come in, Callaghan


Brennan. The opportunities are there now for them to get minutes and


feature but key for people like Murphy and Lacey to come back into


the fold, even in the fold, Ruan Pienaar in changing, after --


training after a win loss to keep things on track. This game is fast


deteriorating into the Michael Murphy show. Round of applause for


him, and there he is, conducting the orchestra in the forward line, 1.1


3-7 points, six points from Murphy today. He has taken them on. From


the midfield role, often I have watched him play and I have wanted


him to give the ball, get it back, driver defenders because I know he


strikes the into them, and watching him do it today is fantastic. He


looks anomalous form as the season rolls on. You are losing a game by


six points and end up making some substitutions, there is one from


Antrim's point of view, bringing on Conor Small.


Here comes Brendan Bradley, being taken off.


Brendan Bradley is, and there is Patrick McBrearty. Again, not a bad


man to bring on. Yes, I still rate McBrearty as one of the top three


four inside forwards in the game, the latex possession so plainly and


turned sharply, and that left foot is so damaging. I expect him to


start games at Donegal and progress further in the Ulster Championship.


Jamie Brennan makes way, breaking ball was won by Antrim to McCann.


It's it short. Behind from Michael Murphy. Murphy


looking to do the dirty work. I have been hit by Jack Dowling before,


Murphy has felt the effect of that, he is one solid man, loves the gym,


Jack Dowling. It wasn't his fault that Murphy came in trying to


dispossess him. He has come out potentially with sore ribs, Michael


Murphy. Amazing that Michael Murphy is 27 years of age, captain of a


county team at 22 committee said the 2011 game against Kildare when they


won that quarterfinal was the best ever memory in a Donegal shirt,


despite winning championships after that despite winning an All-Ireland.


No matter how big he has put in the big stage, he is still doing dirty


work. He is. He charges into the ball, looking to get a hand in to


get it back. He might have hurt his hand. Yes, I think you are right.


Hand or potentially ribs, lower ribs. We just don't know. Hopefully


he will be OK to continue. He is one of the great players. Certainly of


his own generation, the way he has led teams. I played against him at


school football. Even then, you could tell he had leadership


qualities. What a career. After those medals, you would be very,


very happy. He is hungry for more. He won't want to come off. He said


Brendan and of any was his childhood hero. One suspects there are many


children in the crowd to beg where that man is indeed his hero. Murphy


is back on his feet. Doesn't look 100%. I would be surprised if


Donegal took the risk of letting Murphy finished the game, which is


disappointing for the supporters. But I would imagine they will maybe


try to get him off to protect their star player. Kevin O'Boyle takes on


his man, does very well indeed. Patrick Gallagher, the full-back,


tries to play at inside. Players charging with the ball.


Conor Small finds his man. Kevin O'Boyle again. CJ McGourty, very


deep. McGourty once the return pass, doesn't get it. Paddy McBride has


it, does well to maintain possession, skips past one man and


tries to go buy a second. Transfers in football, Jack Dowling has it. It


is in the hands of Kevin O'Boyle. CJ McGourty. They are having to work


very hard to get into this Donegal half of the field. Declan Lynch.


Donegal's 13 players inside their own 45-metre line. Cornerback, Peter


Healy, Declan Lynch. Paddy McBride, Jack Dowling.


Donegal are making it extremely difficult for this Antrim attack to


penetrate that defence. No holes, no gaps. Thomas McCann, trying to


create a bit of space for himself, goes into the tackle, stripped of


the ball. Donegal, away with it, and you wouldn't be surprised if Donegal


can exist with the score, we have seen it so might then do it so often


in the past. Attacking at speed was Eoin McHugh. The ball in the hands


of Jason McGee, still going, goes for the shot. Off the post. Paul


Stirling play and eventually trickles out for a goal kick,


classic Donegal -- ball still in plaster, we didn't see that in the


first half, Antrim were able to get in behind him. That is what Donegal


are all about, a great counterattack. Brendan McCole comes


in. Sean McVeigh is taking off. There is Sean. He played from


London, the Munden team that beat Fermanagh in the Championship just a


few years ago. -- the London team. Another substitution for Donegal.


That man coming on, Martin Michael O'Neill. Two years ago during the


first game of the he played against Tyrone, scored a goal that they --


Martin McElhinney. Ciaran Thompson is a name we haven't heard an awful


lot of the past few years. A massive impact today. Yes, he has, the whole


seasons so far in Division 1, a fantastic league campaign. Today you


can see his quality, what a left footed house. His brother Anthony


has been a mainstay of the Donegal team. -- what a quality. Had a ride


on the charge, Jack Dowling unable to bundle up the ball. For the


briefest of seconds that goal needed Antrim to moving, were not able to


do it. Donegal win back the ball, on the attack again. Referee says play


on. Ryan McHugh. Still going, tries to pass it inside, given away.


Donegal win it back. Patrick McBrearty. Left foot from a long way


out. And it is wide. Paddy McBrearty is hoping to play in his seventh


gold -- Ulster final this year. He is only 23 years of age. Yellow card


for keirin ward. Back to the McBrearty Boyd, 23 years of age and


hoping to make a seventh Ulster final -- Caolan Ward. I had to check


that, it seemed absurd. It is hard to believe he is only 23 years of


age. He has been around for such a long period of time and integral to


the success Donegal have had in that period. How many more years will he


be via? What a player. Donegal winning the breaking ball, highball,


good defending from Antrim. The degree Patrick Gallagher. Whether


they are written so much on defence or attacking from defence, Patrick


Gallagher has been impressive today. Antrim have had a number of players


holding their own, some defenders really came out, they have not been


able to convert early on, come bursting opportunities, it really


died off after the first 15 minutes, struggling for scores big-time.


Paddy McBride tries to bring it in front of Mark Sweeney. Coming just a


little bit too much. It goes wide -- hurling.


We already have too much yous on the field, we're about to get a third,


Mark McHugh. When with All-Ireland. -- window with All-Ireland. --


winner. Hoping to get back on the field. Frank McGlynn. Finds


McBrearty out in front of his man. Strong attack from McBrearty. You


can hear the ball snap off his gloves. Still going, look at the


return pass, fast hands. I challenge, the referee says play on


coming the shot from distance, as the direction but not strength. The


referee brings it back for the initial foul, it is going to be a


three in so much trouble free inside the 45. That is -- a free inside the


45. He sprinted towards goal, that is a trait that not many forwards


have today. Most pass it back. McBrearty is so direct, that is why


we rate him so highly. Caolan Ward is making way. Again, high


performance from Ward, attacking at every single opportunity. We want to


see more of him in the future. It was him who made the intercept as


Jack Dowling was an golf Antrim a couple of minutes ago. He tracked


back, a clean tackle to save a goal opportunity -- on goal for Antrim.


McBrearty going for this one, a free.


Takes a couple of bounces, and just steadies himself.


McBrearty, curls it with the left, straight over the cost of my


crossbar. -- by crossbar. Getting off the mark in the Ulster


Championship, a nice free for him, struck it well, lovely left footed


free kicks we have been treated to today with CJ McGourty.


Intercepted, Jason McGee. Donegal's midfield has been impressive this


afternoon. Paddy McGrath takes it. Attacking at speed, needs troops


left and right. One of them is McHugh. Ryan McHugh passing it


inside. Paddy McGrath! Who started the move, finishes it into the back


of the net. And Donegal, whether it is an attack, midfield or defence,


they are absolutely sensational. They were, and Michael Murphy with a


defence splitting crossfield pass to stop bad. Some great fast hands.


McHugh finding it. But Paddy McGrath, he rode the tackle from the


keeper well. He just got the foot onto the ball, a lovely smile on his


face, she is chuffed with that goal, lovely unselfish play, by degree


from McHugh. It cut the move wide open and it freed up so many


players. Fantastic goal by Donegal. Thomas McCann goes for the school,


the angle acute, even for a right footed attack at -- Thomas McCann


goes for the score. Just didn't have the direction. Rory Gallagher, go


get the subcommittee shouts. -- go get the Saab, he shouts. Passes it


backwards. Lacie has been quiet since being introduced as a


second-half substitute, but he has found the time. It is going to be a


free in yet again. Karl Lacey always has nice jazzy but is. Yes, he does.


-- jazzy boots. He is a nice player to watch and he looks after himself


as well. You can see he is a fantastic athlete. It will be


interesting to see his impact, how content he will be with potentially


having a bit part in this Donegal team. He will want to play as many


minutes as he can. How you can adapt to what the Gallagher is asking him


to do off the bench could be crucial. Is that the key point in


how we see? He said whether I play seven minutes or one minute or no


minute at all, I'm still feeling good enough I want to give everybody


a goal -- Karl Lacey. The easiest thing for those 32-year-old would be


to say, I have been there and done it. The guys who want to be there,


the team, the young guys to aspire to. Retallick will be delighted to


have him. Great kick from Paddy McBride and eat -- Rory Gallagher


will be delighted. Coming on is 23, Michael Langan. Getting to know


Paddy McBride. Frank McGlynn has made way.


Into the middle of the field. Yet again chasing midi. -- McGee. Paddy


McBride in needs help, find it. Karl Lacey, will he be tempted to go for


a score? Left foot, goes for it. The game as a contest is over right now.


In reality it has been for a while. This is veering an exhibition stuff


for Donegal. On the left foot as well. Quick hands, unselfish play,


the man and a better position. McGlynn on the left foot and now


Karl Lacey, they are bonus was the Donegal. Fantastic scores that they


are, we have been treated to some very fine point taking today. A 23


point total, it is impressive. From Ari Gallagher's team. -- Ruairi


Gallagher. One of the Antrim players has lost his boot. I think that's


Conor Small. A little bit of argy-bargy going on between McGee in


there. Paddy Nealon, the referee, has


little this is used to be made today. Yes, he has. It is a game


that has been easy enough to referee. Michael Murphy gets a


yellow card. He was putting in a shift offensively for his side right


to the end. A bit overzealous with the tackling there. It just shows


you how hungry he still is. I'm surprised to see him out there after


that heavy head he took, but he wants to be out there, leading the


team every minute of the day. Paddy Muir and has had a good job.


Potentially a few free kicks he gave in early that could have been let go


-- the referee had a good job. But he has been consistent and had a


good game. Kevin O'Boyle. Fiennes Jack Dowling, Mark Sweeney. He needs


help, he has found it, Tomas McCann. High challenge from McGee.


The referee blows the whistle. Tomas McCann will bounce up from that.


Yellow card shown. To Neil McGee. The full-back.


CJ McGourty strikes the free. Knocks it over the bar. Eight points to


Antrim. 216 for Donegal. The Donegal supporters will be saying now, OK,


the next thing the Ulster semifinal. It's going to be either Tyrone or


Derry. And one might suspect that most people will either think that


is going to be two, what a semifinal that could be. I stress, could. Of


course, Derry have it within them to beat Tyrone. But you would expect it


is going to be a big semifinal no matter what, a big step up from


Donegal from here. Rory Gallagher will know that. And removed down


into division four. Lovely pass. They will face a lot bigger test


than this. It is great way to start, especially in the second half. A


nice ball from McHugh, the bounce deceived Hugh McFadden and Antrim,


we have it. Nugent. -- Nugent. McBride trying to take on this


Donegal defence. Good plate from the wingback, he has found it. CJ


McGourty, outside of the brood. Caught by the keeper. -- outside of


the boot. Karl Lacey take the challenge, looks for help and finds


it. Well, it has been a disappointing


day for the Antrim management. They will have to regroup and go the way


of the qualifiers. As for the goal, and this man in possession of the


ball, Hugh McFadden, they are going into the Ulster semifinals. McFadden


has been very impressive. He doesn't go for a score, he passes to Michael


Langan. And Michael Langan gets a score.


Giggled a lot of Donegal's scores have been coming off this right-hand


side, great strength and determination by McFadden. Fantastic


kick as well. With that breeze by Lang, he would be happy to get on


the scoresheet. Unselfish play in the forward line. Donegal have given


the ball to the man with the appropriate possession to take the


score, that is why they scored so heavily on the second half. Donegal


when the breaking ball, not the first time we have said that this


afternoon. -- win the breaking ball. Mark McHugh just switches the play,


Donegal on the attack. Jason McGee. Four additional minutes will be


added at the end of this match. Donegal, well, they look as if they


could play all day. Another point. 218-8 points. The school is just


blowing out now. Donegal is putting their dominance on the game -- by


score. A nice point with the breeze, Keidan that hands. Had enough on it


to make it over the crossbar -- ticking. They will regroup, it will


be a long month for them to find out who they get in the qualifiers. It


is going to be difficult to see how they're going to be able to put


together a run but you have to say they held their road to the first


half of this game today. -- their own. Although it chance, a yard wide


of the post, they conceded the first golden Brennan, that ended the game


as a contest. -- the first goal to Brennan. Paddy McBride on the


attack. He has been fouled, the referee says comeback. Paddy McBride


is saying, why can you not say play advantage, play on? Shows his


frustration. The Roscommon man says no, brings it back for the free. And


it is game to be a free in for Antrim. CJ McGourty the man who will


take it. Well, they have had big injuries coming into this game. Both


Murray brothers, they lost their captain from last year, Kevin


leglock. We talked about the manner having a smaller pool of players


than the bigger teams -- Fermanagh. They are such quality players.


Losing multiple quality players for a relatively small team who are, you


know, up against the odds as it is, you can't afford to do it. And


that's why it's hard when the opposition are bringing on quality


of the bench and you're just hanging in there. Having sought Fermanagh


last night and again and tonight, they need everyone fit and firing,


and unfortunately they haven't had that luxury. When these sides played


in 2009, Donegal have won three Ulster championships in All-Ireland,


they have gone one way. Antrim have struggled, but they were impressive


at times in the first half. A transfer Paddy McBride in! -- Paddy


McGrath do. They are finishing with class! It is almost too easy. A


great run inside, the pass was off-loaded, the perfect time. A


change of gear by McBrearty. The finish was fantastic. Antrim have


thrown in the towel now. It is just the way he caught inside the near


post, great finish. One thing on his mind when he got there, it has


really been too easy for Donegal this past 15 or 20 minutes, they


have folded up quite weakly. You give opportunities like that to a


team of talented players like Donegal, you can expect big scores,


318, very impressive in a game of Championship football, particularly


up here in Ulster. They're not finished yet. Another score! Mark


McHugh this time. 319-9 points. People perhaps were fearing the


worst today. But 19 point is massive... It is, that's what we


fear. That is why the Championship has its critics, the former of a


Division 1 team taking on a division 14. But it is what it is. Donegal


have been exceptional, very professional. Last night in the


second half they powered away, their fitness and experience and strength


and depth has shown. It is difficult to Antrim, especially with the


injury that sustained to Fitzpatrick as well. You know, Donegal have


moved so well in the second half. They will be looking forward to that


big semifinal we talked about. But Antrim have lost every game they've


played away this year. That looks as if it is going to continue. I note


the positivity, Martin Clarke, during the first half they were


impressive at times, they did lead. What is the one thing that Antrim


can take for this game Brazil and they look at the first half and how


they got in behind Donegal, and organised defensive unit. They were


able to get shots away from that, scoring around the 21. McGourty and,


can cause problems. Unfortunately they don't have the strength and


numbers to play for 70, 75 minutes of a Championship football. But they


really took the fight to Donegal early. It did come down to the lack


of numbers and the quality of Donegal in the end just to run right


over the top of them. And to be so ruthless. That is what happens in


Championship football against the best teams, there is no letting up,


the competition for places is so hot. Antrim on the attack! They get


a goal! The man that scored it is Conor Small. What a pass by McGourty


outside of the left foot. Antrim have deserved a goal. That wasn't


the first time they threatened the Donegal goal. Just seeing this path


again by McGourty... Beautiful pass. Three or four Donegal defenders who


took out, tidy finish in the top corner. The Donegal defence probably


won't even worried about that, the ball had to go by four players.


Shows the class. But the class belonged to Donegal today,


particularly that man, Rory Gallagher. They go on to the Ulster


semifinal. Handshakes all round. Final score from Ballybofey, it has


finished 319 to one goal and nine. Congratulations, Rory, what was your


overall take? Very pleased to be in the next round. To be honest, it was


a poor game, it never really caught fire so it didn't, you know. It will


stop- start in the second half but we will well in control. In the


first half you had to be patient because Antrim had a decent start.


Luckily there was a strong breeze out there. You wake up with a breeze


and to be fair to CJ he had a couple of late scores, as did Tomas McCann.


It took us a while to settle down, but it was an average performance


for our souls from a long period. Very disappointed in the second-half


performance. It was men against boys. Donegal stayed on in the


second half and put us to the sword. You can have no complaints. I


thought the first half we gave a very good performance, we are having


a lack of luck these days. We lost Matthew Fitzpatrick, who was playing


really well. We had a couple of good goal chances we didn't take the


chances for points. It is a Division 1 team against a division 14. Were


the goals are real highlight given the fact there were three fantastic


team but is and you showed your transition on the strength of their


side? Listen, they were good goals, a lot of good players. The reality


is, we are operating in Division 1 the last number of years, Antrim


were down to division four, we have got very good footballers. The goal


has brightened up the whole day. Job very much done. As for Antrim, a big


job of work to do. That is it, Oisin. A competitive enough first


half, they had goal chances. They started the game positively. For a


team that is coming out of division four, give Donegal a really good run


for the first 15 minutes. The goal chance is obviously something they


have worked on. Two diagonal balls, CJ McGourty, more of a half chance


than an actual chance. This one, Matthew Fitzpatrick. You know,


that's a real chance. That goes into the bottom end of the net. You have


got a completely different game on our hands. Fortunately for Matthew


Fitzpatrick, he had a tough week and ended up going off early. The ball


should have went left, instead it goes right. Fluffed the chance, the


ball in the keeper Boz McCance. The unfortunate thing from Antrim point


of view at that stage is that Donegal then go to counterattack,


right at the top of the field, and stick the ball in the back of the


net. That encapsulated the game, the way the game had gone. You know


what, I suppose from a Donegal point of view, you could see that the


young lads, after this goal, the young lads started to build


confidence. Michael Murphy of course involved, as he was in a lot of


things. Brennan Scarlett the ball in the back of the net. Two minutes


later, Michael kicks the ball over the bar. You could see Donegal,


their spirit raised and the confidence levels. From that point


on, the game was more or less up for the second half. The goals kept


coming. Paddy McGrath and McGrady. McGrath had got a fair fairly torrid


time for the first 15 minutes. They were on the counterattack, Antrim


had no choice but to push out at this stage. The Donegal of old. Yes,


and easy finish from McGrath. Ryan McHugh again involved. Clearing it


up. At this stage, you know, Donegal were running completely rampant.


Karl Lacey come on and had a good cameo, Paddy McGrath and he. --


Paddy McGrath do. He showed his quality, going into


the semifinal, it is nice to have players like that coming off the


bench. To a large extent Rory Gallagher didn't seem that happy


after the game. But I think he would be OK, he knows they will improve


from this point. Paddy McAleer deep was nearly in the starting line-up,


we are not sure whether it was practical or not that he didn't


start -- Patrick McBrearty. You know, sometimes something like that


just works. McBrearty has been tremendous. He is only 23 years of


age. He is still on a steep learning curve, but you have to say that when


he came onto the pitch today he was very impressive. Whether it was


injury or a kick up the prostate and, it worked. What worked and


worked today, that was Michael Murphy. We could have picked out


several incidents, but this stood out early in the second-half. Sean


McVeigh is no small man. He has thrown him off, he then has the


composure to kick the ball over the bar. Michael Murphy is around a long


time, but these young players still look to somebody like Michael


Murphy. He was tremendous today, he is strong and agile. He is able to


kick free kicks and points like that, an inspirational figure.


Banks, Oisin. That is Donegal through to the semifinal, where they


will play either Derry or Tyrone. There you have it, Derry taking on


Tyrone next Sunday, the 28th of May, across BBC Sport NI. And a nudge,


also the way of the mighty man, Pienaar. BBC Sport NI brings you a


unique insight. That is tomorrow evening, 10:40pm on BBC One. And


that is just about it from Ballybofey, where it has been very


much Donegal's day. We will do it all again next Sunday. I hope that


you can join me, Oisin, Paddy, Mark McHugh, the team, that is. But for


now, from me, it has been Donegal's day, Donegal march on. From everyone


in ballad -- Ballybofey, goodbye. He's played his last game


in an Ulster jersey,


Mark Sidebottom and Oisin Mcconville bring you full coverage from Ballybofey as Donegal host Antrim in the quarter-final of the Ulster Gaelic Football Championship.

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