Fitzsimons and Dubs fixed the flaws following 2014 Donegal defeat

July 11, 2018

Donegal's Colm McFadden scores a goal past Dublin goalkeeper Stephen Cluxton during the All-Ireland SFC semi-final at Croke Park in 2014.
©INPHO/Cathal Noonan.

The lessons learned from the 2014 All-Ireland SFC semi-final defeat to Donegal has helped to shape Dublin into the team they are today, according to Michael Fitzsimons.

Four years ago the Tir Chonaill side exposed defensive frailties in the Dublin set-up in the process of recording a surprise 3-14 to 0-17 victory and, reflecting on that day in advance of Saturday's Super 8 opener, Fitzsimons told the Irish Independent: "People had to figure out where they went wrong individually, where we went wrong as a team, at what stages we could have addressed it and what we needed to bring into next year.

"2015 was a great year then. We addressed the flaws in our game and we got the result at the end of it. But it was a tough end to the summer.

"Football has changed a bit since then. And we've probably changed a bit since then. You'd always be wary of stuff like that, of the impact of long kick-outs, of leaving space in certain areas."

The Cuala clubman refused to get drawn into the controversy surrounding two of Dublin's three quarter-final games being played at Croke Park.

"I have no influence in this. And I know it's a sensitive subject so I don't want to be speaking about it. It's a build-up to the game.

"But from my point of view, I don't pay attention to it. That's Donegal's corner to fight, as Kildare did."

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