Monday 23 April 2018

'Even a child at four years of age will know what you do when a ball is kicked to you' - Kildare boss fumes at ref

Donegal 1-15 Kildare 3-7

Eoin Doyle of Kildare appeals to referee David Gough
Eoin Doyle of Kildare appeals to referee David Gough

Chris McNulty

Cian O'Neill took aim at referee David Gough after Kildare fell to a defeat to Donegal that leaves the Lilywhites on the brink of relegation.

O'Neill was incensed at the 16th minute sending off of his captain Eoin Doyle.

Leo McLoone of Donegal in action against David Slattery of Kildare during the Allianz Football League Division 1 Round 4 match between Donegal and Kildare at Fr Tierney Park in Ballyshannon, Co Donegal. Photo by Stephen McCarthy/Sportsfile
Leo McLoone of Donegal in action against David Slattery of Kildare during the Allianz Football League Division 1 Round 4 match between Donegal and Kildare at Fr Tierney Park in Ballyshannon, Co Donegal. Photo by Stephen McCarthy/Sportsfile

The centre-back was shown a second yellow card for not wearing his gumshield.

Doyle, having been booked for an over-the-top barge on Ryan McHugh, was instructed to leave the field to get a gumshield.

As he headed for the dugout, Doyle caught a kick-out from goalkeeper Mark Donnellan, who had been unaware of what was unfolding.

O'Neill took time out to view the incident on a pitchside monitor before speaking to the media.

Kildare manager Cian O'Neill Photo: Sportsfile
Kildare manager Cian O'Neill Photo: Sportsfile

"Absolutely disgraceful," was the Kildare manager's scathing verdict.

"He shouldn't have re-started the game until the player went off the pitch.

"No-one knew he was being told to go off. He sprinted over to the line and called: 'I need to get a gum shield'.

"He went for the ball. Even a child at four years of age will know what you do when a ball is kicked to you - your reaction is to go for the ball.

"He caught it while he was still running over to us. The ref' didn't realise he had already given him a yellow card."

O'Neill claimed the player's original gum shield had been 'knocked out of his mouth.'

Despite playing 54 minutes with a man extra, Donegal needed a late and fortuitous goal from Ryan McHugh to earn their first League win.

After three narrow defeats to Kerry, Galway and Dublin, Donegal weren't as fluent here, but managed to put points on the board at last.

"We came to get two points, and we dug deep to get over the line," said Donegal boss, Declan Bonner.

"It was about getting over the line and that's what we done, and we're happy to leave here with two points.

"We just need to do it on a more consistent level.

"Conceding the goals was disappointing, and how easily we were cut open, but every time we responded well and got scores on the board and that was pleasing.

"We'll look at a lot of the stuff that is going on at the minute, especially how the goals came.

"It's a work in progress, but it was great to get the two points."

Ryan McHugh, from an impossible position out on the stand side, saw a shot loop over Donnellan and into the net for what proved the winner, five minutes from the end.

Daniel Flynn got in to round League debutant Shaun Patton - the former Sligo Rovers goalkeeper - for a seventh-minute goal that put Kildare in the driving seat.

Flynn and Kildare had the ball in the net again three minutes later, palming home from Ben McCormack's unselfish pass. Gough, however, deemed that Flynn was in the square before McCormack offloaded and chalked off the goal.

Odhrán Mac Niallais knocked over an instant reply to Flynn's goal, but Donegal's attack misfired for much of the opening period.

Hugh McFadden landed a big score after 15 minutes, but it wasn't until a pair of fisted efforts from Patrick McBrearty at the close of the first period that Donegal really stirred.

With the excellent Eoin Ban Gallagher among the scorers Donegal hit five points at the outset of the second half to lead.

But Niall Kelly pegged them back when he drilled to the net. Donegal moved clear again only for sub David Slattery to nervelessly steer home a third Kildare goal.

Donegal needed a lifeline again and got it in the form of McHugh's goal.

Irish Independent

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