first_imgDonegal’s Leo Mc Loone attacks the Down defence during the first half of their Ulster Senior Football Championship match in Breffni Park ,Cavan today. PIC: Gary FoyIT was a scrappy affair at the Kingspan Breffni Park in Co Cavan, littered with fouls and some poor refereeing.But Donegal manager Jim McGuinness was more than happy to take a 0-12 win over Down’s 0-9 at windswept Co Cavan in front of a crowd of almost 22,000. Now Donegal march onto the Ulster final on July 21 to face either Cavan or Monaghan, which gives McGuinness a month to get his team fit and improve on his team’s performance.Down will be disappointed that they didn’t take their chances in front of the posts but will now go into the All Ireland qualifiers.After the game Jim said: “We have to improve ourselves if we are going to win the Ulster title. We played very well in the first 25 minutes.“It was a tough battle. There was no way around that. It was a tough battle. Our lads found a way to win the game and that’s the most important thing. “Once you win the game you have got another day to fight again.”The throw-in was delayed by ten minutes because of traffic congestion on the way into the ground.Just before the end of half time, Donegal’s Ryan Bradley had to be taken off with possible a head injury.Down got off to a quiet start but it was Donegal who got the early scores on the board to give Jim McGuinness a cushion over his opposite number James McCartan.Michael Murphy got three points on the board for Donegal, along with two from McFadden and one from Paddy McBrearty.It took down 15 minutes got on the score board with a free kick from Donal O’Hare. And O’Hare got another points from frees before Mark McPoland got Down’s first point from open play.Half Time: Donegal scorers: Murphy 0-3, McFadden 0-2, McBrearty 0-1Down scorers: O’Hare 0-3, Poland 0-1.In the second half, Down had to come out strong to try and beat the All-Ireland champions but Donegal proved too fit for the Mourne men. Rory Kavanagh scored the first point of the second half for Donegal.But Down quickly closed the gap with Donal O’Hare getting a point.Michael Murphy scored for Donegal on 45 minutes to increase the lead to two points.Donegal then brought on Ross Wherity on for Leo McLoone as McGuinness looked to strengthen his side against a tough Down team.On 50 minutes it was still a close game, with Donal O’Hare getting Down’s sixth point, his fifth.But Donegal’s left-footed Colin McFadden, who didn’t get much of the ball, was the difference in the second half.He scored three more points to cushion his team’s lead.But McCartan’s Down men were not going down without a fight as they chased an Ulster final place.Points from O’Hare, substitutes Jerome Johnston and Danny Savage kept Down in close contention.However, with the lead down to two points and Down looking a goal, Michael Murphy scored on 69 minutes.It was to be the end for Down and Donegal, despite not playing to their full potential, won by 0-12 to 0-9.McGuinness now has food for thought as he prepares for another Ulster final.Donegal scorers: Murphy 0-5, McFadden 0-5, McBrearty 0-1, Kavanagh 0-1.Down scorers: O’Hare 0-6, Poland 0-1, Johnston 0-1, Savage 0-1.Down: B McVeigh, D McCartan, B McArdle, R Boyle, D Rooney, P Turley, K Quinn, K King, K McKernan, A Rogers, M Poland, N Madine, D O’Hare, B Coulter, Laverty.Donegal: P Durcan, P McGrath, N McGee, E McGee, Declan Walsh, F McGlynn, A Thompson, R Bradley, R Kavanagh, David Walsh, L McLoone, M McHugh, P McBrearty, M Murphy, C McFadden.ULSTER GAA SEMI-FINAL: DONEGAL REACH FINAL AFTER BEATING DOWN BY THREE POINTS was last modified: June 23rd, 2013 by cassoscoopShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)last_img read more