This morning’s Irish Independent has a few quotes from James Horan from last night’s press event, though curiously they don’t include the pointed one he made about Donegal being willing to try everything that might give them an advantage. Although James claimed to be fairly non-plussed about the draw itself – saying “it doesn’t really matter” that we pulled the Herrin Gutters – he enthused about being involved once again in the All-Ireland series and said that “we are really looking forward to having a crack next Sunday”. On the challenge that awaits us next weekend, he said:
“They will play their game, we will play ours. We are very happy with where we are, how we are developing and meeting each challenge that comes our way.”
Which is pretty much what you’d expect him to say. James has a fairly well-hewn mantra at this stage and he doesn’t tend to get drawn into any kind of detailed public analysis of the opposition before big games. He’s not going to deviate from this path now.
He confirmed, though, that David Clarke and Kenneth O’Malley are both definitely out of Sunday’s quarter-final, which means that Rob Hennelly will once again start between the posts for us. He also said that Michael Conroy is a doubt due to the hamstring injury that forced him off against London. Somehow I doubt if Mickey C will feature for us at Croke Park this weekend.
While most of the coverage about Donegal today focuses on McGuinness’s laughable and utterly two-faced moanings about the physicality of their opponents, their scrap-happy Maor Foirne Rory Gallagher is quoted in today’s Irish Times where he says that facing us will “add spice” to Donegal’s appearance in this year’s quarter-finals. That’s one way of putting it, I guess. He also muses on their mutation from challengers to champions when he says that their quarter-final pairing with Kerry last year was the toughest draw possible for them whereas this year “we are the toughest draw.” I think that’s a fair enough assessment, to be honest, though it does rather skate over the fact that – like Kerry last year – the reason they ended up in that half of the draw was because of their failure to win provincial honours. Here’s hoping, then, that they suffer the same fate as Kerry did twelve months ago.
Finally, the official Donegal GAA Twitter account appears to have had a bit of a rush of blood – or maybe porter – to the head when they tweeted the following late last night:
— Official Donegal GAA (@officialdonegal) July 28, 2013
I know County Board PROs are tripping over themselves nowadays in their eagerness to show they’re all up to date in terms of their use of social media and all the rest but I hadn’t realised that winding up the opposition was now part of the official remit of the lads in the jumpers. It’s a fairly pathetic attempt too and if they’ve any sense they’ll steer clear of this kind of ‘humour’ in future.