Donegal fall as Antrim finally raises their game…

For those of you who care, the Donegal Gaelic team put in one of their worst performances in a generation. I hate to make lame excuses, but a deteriorating economic situation in the Republic always has a tendency to hit the west first, and Donegal in particular pretty hard. Ten out of the current squad is unemployed (lack of professional status means that many are just sticking around for the sake of the Championship campaign. As Keith Duggan noted on Saturday, Medals do not put bread on the table… But the match also comes after a winter of turmoil in the county. Having blown a game they were 5/1 favourites to win, with a performance that gave the impression their minds were on other things, I’m not sure I see their way back through the All Ireland qualifiers… That said, the county that most Belfast players owe their allegiance to, has finally woken up after a long slumber… And have given their long suffering fans something to shout about at last… Good for the game; good for Belfast… But, despite having been born on the Antrim side of the Lagan, my sympathies still lie to the north and west…

  • Danny O’Connor

    Mick.hahahahahahaha,No doubt the manager showed them Pat Spillane’s column before the match,slick but lightweight- a home banker. Not hahahahahaha.

  • RepublicanStones

    Daniel O’Donnell can you hear me? Daniel O’Donnell your boys took a hell of a beating !

  • CW

    Well done the Saffrons. It’s good to see some topical GAA postings on this site now that the summer is upon us and the road to Croker wide open again. However there was no mention here of Tyrone’s (the reigning All-Ireland champions if anyone needs reminding) victory over Armagh a few weeks ago. Definite evidence of a regional bias here. Or sour grapes perchance 😉

  • Mick Fealty

    Oh, I remember enough about Tyrone in its pre Dooher/Cavanagh days, not to resent its success now…

    I do admit to eating sour grapes just now, but let’s say my mind was on more pressing matters before…

  • CS Parnell

    RepublicanStones made me laugh.

    I recall seeing Antrim take a real beating at the hands of Tyrone back in the mid seventies at Casement. Probably the first ever major sporting event I’d been to.

    Slight mixed feelings about all this. Antrim born but a Donegal family.

  • Mick Fealty

    There’s more than a few of us CS…

  • brendan,belfast

    For those who are conflicted just bear in mind the lot of the faithful Antrim supporter. Since 1982 we have won a total of 3 championship matches and drawn 3, that’s a meagre diet for your average Saffron fan.

    Now we face into a semi which is winnable, losable too but it’s up for grabs.

    Stay with us – “Far across yonder blue……”

  • Little Adams

    Why the begrudgery to Antrim? Is it because Adams’ son once wore saffron?

  • oracle

    What a dire dire dire dire REALLY DIRE… GOD AWFUL DIRE past-time.
    Please someone tell me there is no sports money being given to this absolute nonsense of a game.
    Ghastly dire dire rubbish.
    And they were going to waste millions on a Stadia to host that TRASH…..!

    If there is money being given to this it shpould be stopped and given to a much more deserving past-time, anything hell even TIDDLYWINKS BUT NOT THAT CRAP

  • the joxer

    It would be great if Antrim reached an Ulster Final. It would galvanise support for the team from all over the county, but particularly from Belfast. Anything that gets the kids interested in sport and away from SKY TV and Play-stations has got to be a good thing.

  • Slugger O’Toole Admin

    LA,

    Now what oracle said; that’s REAL begrudgery.

  • clg abu

    [text removed] alternatively, why don’t you come down to Casement Park next Sunday for the Ulster SFC Semi-final and repeat your comments to any passing Derry or Tyrone fan. Let us know what they say/do.

    [text removed – read the comments policy – mod]

  • Limerickman

    Well done to Antrim. Outside of Limerick I would shout for Antrim, the only other county in Ireland that I would shout for. Great hurling people in the Glens, but great to see the footballers coming.

  • pete whitcroft

    As a resident of Antrim for nearly 10 years it would be great to not have harp back to being from Newry and claim Down or if pushed Armagh as the team I support.
    Antrim deserve a break.
    But when all is said and done I support Down, cos that where I’m from. Isn’t that that how it is?

  • brendan,belfast

    Yes Pete, that’s how it is. You don’t choose where you are born and you don’t choose who you support or – thankfully – who you play for. It’s the beauty of Gaelic Games, and why supporting your county means so much.

    You can appreciate all you like the way other counties play the game, or as I do, support your provincial teams when it gets to the latter stages.

    So if the victories come along rarely, they are to be savoured. Novenna starts tomorrow – I’ll do anything it takes to get past Cavan!!

  • Dec

    But when all is said and done I support Down, cos that where I’m from.

    You don’t choose where you are born and you don’t choose who you support or – thankfully – who you play for.

    Take note, Fealty.

  • oracle

    You also stated rather than asked “Let’s see if you can grow a pair and tell a GAA fan to his/her face what you think” Firstly I need clarification are you suggesting that the presence of male genitals are the only precursor for asking a question of irritation or a statement of fact? And there’s me thinking it was courage required to indicate whether or not a human being was brave, when all the time the criteria was if the person was an un-castrated male or not!

    Secondly are you implying that GAA football fans are grotesquely violent and that they would use physical violence against non followers of GAA football who believed that it should not be encouraged at any level and on a Government list of pastimes not worthy of financial support?

    What are the origins of this past-time is it Scottish Welsh or English because it certainly isn’t Irish! Although I doubt that someone as ungifted as yourself or the violent thugs you envisage supporting your past-time would be aware of this fact.

    A few last points “come down to Casement Park” well considering that most of us in Ulster live at an altitude of less that 300 metres and are therefore deemed to be on the same plain your “down to” implies that technically everyone on Slugger lives geographically North of Belfast where Casement Park is located, well we don’t and technically as we live on a globe we would all have to go up to go anywhere, but that’s just a technical point.

    Casement Park now tell me wasn’t that a military base for the army for years? And correct me if I’m wrong but weren’t the GAA in Dublin delighted to receive the rent for the use of the place by the British Army?
    Oh and finally your favourite past-time has a “u” in it not an “e”

  • oracle

    Ah right so it is a “GOOD OLD BRITISH GAME AFTER ALL”

    Why didn’t you just state this from the start instead of pretending it was Irish or something

  • Glencoppagagh

    Oracle
    It’s Irish because they are the people who invented it at the back end of the 19C and nobody else is remotely interested in it.

  • Mick Fealty

    Touche Dec. I was born in Antrim, and spent the first two years there, but I grew up in Down, and spent most of my childhood following Donegal with my father. 40 years of crap Antrim football teams put paid to any strong feelings towards them, one way or another.

  • Nobody likes a bitter begrudging fool !

    I suppose if Ireland had the colonial exploits Britain had they could have exported their sports further afield as well….maybe even this far !

    http://www.maginternational.org/news/vietnam-mag-supplies–at-southeast-asian-gaelic-games-/

    Submit word ‘points’ !

  • Mark McGregor

    Fealty,

    Antrim’s day has come. We took our shit football medicine with stoicism. I’m happy to see a glory-hunting turncoat like yourself start to suffer the wilderness years ahead for Donegal as we Saffrons head onwards and upwards. Sure you can blame it all on unemployment ;0)

  • What about?

    [i]Ah right so it is a “GOOD OLD BRITISH GAME AFTER ALL”

    Why didn’t you just state this from the start instead of pretending it was Irish or something [/i]

    It would seem that the freaks don’t even have the decency to wait until dark to come out any more.

  • Little Adams

    Strange that GAA, the outfit the Orange lower class hate, is dependent so much on the British county system.

    Also, is the “rise” of Irish (sic) cricket a securocrat undertaking? In the south at least, no one with propwer control of their limbs play it. Just how many blow ins are on the Irish (sic) cricket team?

    One wonders what Mick Cusack, himself an accomplished cricketer, would tthink of it? Or Archbishop Croke (peace be upon Him) and his comments about effeminate games?

  • Glencoppagagh

    Nobody likes a bitter begrudging fool
    “I suppose if Ireland had the colonial exploits Britain had they could have exported their sports further afield”
    No but they exported a lot of people instead who unaccountably seemed to forget how to play their ‘national games’ (possibly because they had yet to be invented).

    “….maybe even this far”
    Hurray, the GAA World Cup is just around the corner. They dream of nothing else in Vietnam, apparently.

  • Nobody likes a bitter ‘aul cod of a fool !

    ‘No but they exported a lot of people instead who unaccountably seemed to forget how to play their ‘national games’ (possibly because they had yet to be invented).’

    Invented? I suppose soccer and cricket were ‘discovered’ were they? Any more lemons you wanna suck?

  • Glencoppagagh

    “Invented? I suppose soccer and cricket were ‘discovered’ were they?”
    Evolved more likely. What is certainly true is that didn’t originate with a group of men sitting down in a hotel and setting out to invent a derivative game.

  • Charles Darwin’s sliotar

    Glen…. aye bud, hurling only started last year sure !

    Evolved you say regarding those fine and true british sports….right, they weren’t invented like them ‘aul fenian sports, no , they ‘evolved’.

  • Dec

    I was born in Antrim, and spent the first two years there, but I grew up in Down, and spent most of my childhood following Donegal with my father. 40 years of crap Antrim football teams put paid to any strong feelings towards them, one way or another.

    I remember leaving Casement Park in the early 90’s after another Antrim drubbing at the hands of some bunch of large-eared farmers and badger-baiters when a friend summed up our mutual misfortune perfectly:

    “Why can’t we come from a good county?”

  • Glencoppagagh

    Nobody + Darwin
    I was referring to the game called “phutbul”, not hurling which seems to be a foreign game in most of these parts.

    If it makes you feel better, by all means cling to the myth that your ancestors played a game whose distinctive characteristics were that the ball be lifted from the ground only with the foot and not be carried for more than a few steps.

  • Bob the builder

    Why so bitter Glen…nothing constructive to say?

  • Mick Fealty

    Last match I saw in Casement must have been the ’69 Ulster Final watching the Down All Ireland Champions (Captain, Sean O’Neill with big Kelly in goal) play Cavan; when they were still a great team. We only went to matches out in the country after that.

  • Dec

    No but they exported a lot of people instead who unaccountably seemed to forget how to play their ‘national games’ (possibly because they had yet to be invented).

    Actually Glencoppagh, it’s widely believed that sports such as Ice Hockey in Canada and Australian Rules football emerged from Hurling and Gaelic football which were imported by irish immigrants. Sorry if basic facts blow a hole in your begrudgery.

    Hurray, the GAA World Cup is just around the corner. They dream of nothing else in Vietnam, apparently.

    You may find this link useful.

  • Mick Fealty

    Look lads, you love it or you hate. Unless you can say why you hate it, I’m not sure it’s of much use or interest to the rest of us.

    Just got a copy of the GAA 1884-2009 book that’s currently recommended in our Amazon picks on the front page… It has some interesting stuff to say about the early GAA in Ulster. Not least the resistance by 150 Ulster clubs to an attempted takeover of Congress by the IRB in 1887…

    Expensive, but comprehensive.