BY LIAM PORTER
DONEGAL ladies team manager Maggie Foy was seething yesterday after Karen Guthrie was sin-binned during her team’s defeat against Tyrone and she suggested that more than being disappointed with the defeat, she was annoyed with referee Yvonne Duffy.
“I am disappointed, the girls worked very hard and we came in expecting for the win but it didn’t come. It was a very physical game out there, we got a sin-bin and I know you can’t go blaming referees but it was 50-50 and if you make calls you have to be consistent through the game.”
The Donegal boss added: “I am unhappy with the referee, you have to be consistent and fair across the board we were told rules at the start of the year but these rules don’t seem to come in when it comes to playing on the field. We are talking about protecting players and stuff, I am more annoyed than anything else.
The girls played well, we were unlucky at times but we were caught on the hop at the start. It was a very physical game but the girls sat back and let them hit them, there was a lot of hitting off the ball as well.
Our girls want to play football but if it’s going to be a boxing ring they would have taken it to a ring. It was a very physical game but in the end it was a Donegal player that got the sin bin.”
Foy though, said she was not making excuses, saying her team was still very much finding their feet.
“We can go with excuses but there are no excuses, the girls are finding their feet and I have to support that and I have to encourage that, maybe we need to be just more physical from the start. It was a tough game. Tyrone played the game out there our girls let them play the football, it took us a long time to get settled down. Fair play to Tyrone they came out hard, they hit us hard and they got the scores.”
After last week’s encouraging performance against Cork, hopes were high that Donegal could get their first win of the campaign yesterday.
“We thought we would pick up from where we were last week but it didn’t happen and Tyrone came in on the back of a defeat and they had a point to prove. They play a lot of players behind the ball and they attack from the back line and we played into their hands, it was always going to be a battle.
We were back to a point at one stage, we hit the post a few times and we had a goal disallowed those kind of scores would have settled us and brought us back closer together.”
However Donegal really had no answer to sharp-shooter Gemma Begley who chalked up 4-2 of her team’s total with a devastating performance in front of goal.
“Gemma Begley is a very strong player and it was difficult to cope with her, we missed a midfielder there today. Ciara Hegarty would have made a difference but the girls know what they have to do from here on in.”
Hegarty, unavailable through work and study commitments was one of a number changes from the team that lined out against Cork last week and the manager said it was important for other players to get their chance.
“We needed to make the changes. We have a panel and the girls need to come out and step up to the plate, they are learning as they go but then I am learning as we go along as well about what the players can and can’t give.”
With a free week next weekend, Donegal resumes with home games against Dublin and Mayo.
“It won’t be hard to get the players lifted, today’s over done with, we know what we have to work on and we’ll keep moving forward from there. Nobody said it would be easy.”