Donegal Forum

Intermediate Championship

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Quarter final stages this weekend in the IFC. A hard fought win for Cloich Cheann Fhaola yesterday against Red Hugh's. Jason McGee's return is a big boost for them. Also no surprise really at Aodh Ruadh putting away Naomh Muire.

Buncrana and Naomh Columba have the home advantage today for their games against Gaeil Fhánada and Malin respectively. You'd expect the two home teams to come through those two games as well. Out of those four, it could be anyone's championship.

Buncrana a real dark horse this year coming up from junior but they have some serious talent there with the likes of Jigger, John Campbell, Caolan McGonagle, Bruce Waldron, etc

DL_Man (Donegal) - Posts: 108 - 06/09/2020 12:53:53    2290793

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How do peoole think the semi's will go?

TheRock2121 (Donegal) - Posts: 641 - 06/09/2020 21:54:33    2290866

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Really hard to call. Still think Buncrana could be the surprise package although they seem to struggle a lot in defence, especially with goals today. Glen had a 3 point win over Malin but looked in control the whole time. Aodh Ruadh had a big win against Naomh Muire but I'd imagine they aren't brilliant this year anyway.

Wouldn't want to have to bet on either game.

DL_Man (Donegal) - Posts: 108 - 07/09/2020 00:07:29    2290887

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Really not seen enough to have a strong opinion. I did catch one of Buncrana's games online and they were certainly impressive going forward. Jigger looks to be over his injury woes and seems to be going well. I do feel this weekend will be their acid test. Cloughaneely have come from the strong side of the draw and have a fully fit John Fitzgerald this year. Add to that the form of Paul Sweeney with Jason McGee getting back to full fitness they will be a tough nut to crack.

panamasam (Australia) - Posts: 2519 - 07/09/2020 18:01:09    2291021

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cloughaneely will be strong favourites to overcome an aodh ruadh side who showed great resilience to overcome naomh columba. good to jason mcgee starting again. Buncrana despite a host of big names flatter to deceive yet again.

totalrecall (Leitrim) - Posts: 548 - 14/09/2020 10:18:51    2291958

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Replying To totalrecall:  "cloughaneely will be strong favourites to overcome an aodh ruadh side who showed great resilience to overcome naomh columba. good to jason mcgee starting again. Buncrana despite a host of big names flatter to deceive yet again."
Yes I share that sentiment. I would strongly fancy Cloughaneely to go one better this year. I am not sure Ballyshannon are going as well as last year but they showed serious character to dog themselves out of the hole they were in at the weekend. If the game is anything like the titanic tussle of last year we are in for a treat.

panamasam (Australia) - Posts: 2519 - 14/09/2020 14:17:19    2292041

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Ballyshannon are showing the character that was often questioned of them in other years. Can they win when the game is in the melting pot ? They proved this yesterday. Very tight call not much between the teams. Be a great game between two teams who like play good football

Donegal007 (Donegal) - Posts: 18 - 14/09/2020 14:47:03    2292051

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Glen really missed their chance against Aodh Ruadh last week, in saying that ballyshannon did battle well and showed good nerve. Cloughaneely don't seem overly convincing this year. Aodh Ruadh might be better at grinding out a result if it goes down to the wire perhaps?

On another note, I do strongly believe that a change has to be made to the championship format to allow a greater flow of teams between intermediate and senior. There's now a backlog of good teams trying to get out of the IFC and a backlog of senior teams who should be out of the senior grade! Whether it's going back to the old system of linking it to league positions, or allowing 2 teams up and 2 teams down, I think something has to be done. All 4 of the semi finalists in the IFC would probably beat the 2 relegation playoff teams in the senior.

DL_Man (Donegal) - Posts: 108 - 20/09/2020 12:04:59    2293157

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Replying To DL_Man:  "Glen really missed their chance against Aodh Ruadh last week, in saying that ballyshannon did battle well and showed good nerve. Cloughaneely don't seem overly convincing this year. Aodh Ruadh might be better at grinding out a result if it goes down to the wire perhaps?

On another note, I do strongly believe that a change has to be made to the championship format to allow a greater flow of teams between intermediate and senior. There's now a backlog of good teams trying to get out of the IFC and a backlog of senior teams who should be out of the senior grade! Whether it's going back to the old system of linking it to league positions, or allowing 2 teams up and 2 teams down, I think something has to be done. All 4 of the semi finalists in the IFC would probably beat the 2 relegation playoff teams in the senior."
Agree there. I think it's easier so stay senior than it is to get out of Intermediate under the current set up. I'm not sure what the best way to go about it would be, but I'd be in favour of a 2 up 2 down scenario.

Lockjaw (Donegal) - Posts: 7302 - 21/09/2020 10:52:58    2293356

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Replying To DL_Man:  "Glen really missed their chance against Aodh Ruadh last week, in saying that ballyshannon did battle well and showed good nerve. Cloughaneely don't seem overly convincing this year. Aodh Ruadh might be better at grinding out a result if it goes down to the wire perhaps?

On another note, I do strongly believe that a change has to be made to the championship format to allow a greater flow of teams between intermediate and senior. There's now a backlog of good teams trying to get out of the IFC and a backlog of senior teams who should be out of the senior grade! Whether it's going back to the old system of linking it to league positions, or allowing 2 teams up and 2 teams down, I think something has to be done. All 4 of the semi finalists in the IFC would probably beat the 2 relegation playoff teams in the senior."
I completely agree regarding the 2 up and 2 down suggestion. Actually it was something alluded to by Jason McGee when interviewed after the Buncrana game. In terms of the final itself I would probably disagree regarding whether Cloughaneely have been convincing or not. I actually think they have been more convincing this year than last year. A couple of younger lads have stepped up and having a fully fit Fitzgerald is a big bonus which he wasn't last year. Plus I think the club's management deserve massive credit for not rushing Jason McGee back. He should be a fresh man good to go at the weekend which will be a big boost. The group game was tight with a 8 point turnaround in favour of Cloughaneely from half time. Ballyshannon were hindered by injuries in that game but they did have home advantage and Jason McGee was absent. Cloughaneely by 2-3 pts.

panamasam (Australia) - Posts: 2519 - 21/09/2020 15:19:15    2293410

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The two best teams in the Championship have made the final, although Glen will be kicking themselves for throwing away a healthy semi final lead late on in a game two years in a row. I'm sure they'll get a shiver in their spine every time they pass Fintra deep into the winter and early spring.

I feel Aodh Ruadh will just shade it as they have a few more match winners - do rule out ET or the dreaded penalties! As a previous poster said, these two teams would more than hold their own in Senior Championship and the county board should definitely consider introducing a two up two down set up.

Finally, at the other end of this championship I note that a date has still not been set for the relegation play off yet. The senior one is down for this weekend - any particular reason why there is no word of the intermediate one?

peiledoir20 (Donegal) - Posts: 63 - 21/09/2020 18:51:01    2293445

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Congratulations to aodh rua. Well deserved win. A lot of quality players on show. Hard luck Cloughaneely not easy losing two years in a row but I've no doubt your day will come soon. Finally nice to see Jason Mc gee back he looks a bit rusty but that's to be expected. Hopefully the poor lad gets an injury free run now.

rorysboys (Donegal) - Posts: 946 - 26/09/2020 22:45:52    2294236

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Great final. I turned out to be right about Aodh Ruadh grinding out the result! Great last 15 minutes from them. Even with the obvious CCF error that led to the goal, I thought AR finished the game far better. Cloughaneely were wasteful towards the end whereas Aodh Ruadh were a lot more clinical.

Some great players on that Ballyshannon team. It'll be great to see the likes of McGrath, the Boyle, Patton and Rooney play in the senior ranks and nice to see a club with a strong football tradition back in the senior grade again. As another poster said, it must be devistating for CCF losing another final, but that's football. I think it reinforces my point about the need for more of a turnover between senior and intermediate. Cloughaneely are more than good enough to play senior but are stuck in an intermediate rut.

DL_Man (Donegal) - Posts: 108 - 27/09/2020 13:43:25    2294287

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Replying To DL_Man:  "Great final. I turned out to be right about Aodh Ruadh grinding out the result! Great last 15 minutes from them. Even with the obvious CCF error that led to the goal, I thought AR finished the game far better. Cloughaneely were wasteful towards the end whereas Aodh Ruadh were a lot more clinical.

Some great players on that Ballyshannon team. It'll be great to see the likes of McGrath, the Boyle, Patton and Rooney play in the senior ranks and nice to see a club with a strong football tradition back in the senior grade again. As another poster said, it must be devistating for CCF losing another final, but that's football. I think it reinforces my point about the need for more of a turnover between senior and intermediate. Cloughaneely are more than good enough to play senior but are stuck in an intermediate rut."
I was of the same opinion but having thought about it some more I think a two up two down scenario would take away some of the bite from the Intermediate Championship. It really is a competitive championship and so hard to win. You'd imagine the Ballyshannon lads will fight tooth and nail to stay senior in 2021. They know better than most how hard it is to get to senior.

Lockjaw (Donegal) - Posts: 7302 - 28/09/2020 10:09:26    2294442

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Replying To Lockjaw:  "I was of the same opinion but having thought about it some more I think a two up two down scenario would take away some of the bite from the Intermediate Championship. It really is a competitive championship and so hard to win. You'd imagine the Ballyshannon lads will fight tooth and nail to stay senior in 2021. They know better than most how hard it is to get to senior."
Maybe as a consolation prize the defeated team in the Intermediate final could play off against the senior playoff loser in a one-last-chance type scenario?

So for 2020, Dungloe would face Cloughaneely?

That's about the fairest you could make it.

Lockjaw (Donegal) - Posts: 7302 - 28/09/2020 12:46:02    2294501

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Replying To Lockjaw:  "Maybe as a consolation prize the defeated team in the Intermediate final could play off against the senior playoff loser in a one-last-chance type scenario?

So for 2020, Dungloe would face Cloughaneely?

That's about the fairest you could make it."
Aodh ruadh are replacing dungloe so that wouldn't work.

Would need to be Milford v cloughaneely. Need some change because next week two division two teams will be contesting the junior final which is crazy.

I remember the junior final was always played between two division four teams. Whole thing needs re worked. It's easier to stay at senior championship than get promoted. Six chances to win a game.

ballboy101 (Donegal) - Posts: 165 - 28/09/2020 21:35:03    2294640

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Replying To ballboy101:  "Aodh ruadh are replacing dungloe so that wouldn't work.

Would need to be Milford v cloughaneely. Need some change because next week two division two teams will be contesting the junior final which is crazy.

I remember the junior final was always played between two division four teams. Whole thing needs re worked. It's easier to stay at senior championship than get promoted. Six chances to win a game."
100% in agreement.
Needs to be a senior league of 16 teams
Intermediate league of 12 teams
Junior league of 12 teams
Teams have 2 chances to move up or down a grade. If u win the intermediate league or intermediate championship u get promoted to senior. If same team wins both the intermediate league and championship, the team that finishes 2nd in league moves up to senior. U get relegated from senior if u finish bottom of league or lose the championship relegation like Dungloe this year. If same team finishes bottom of senior league and senior championship, the team 2nd from bottom in senior league moves down to intermediate. Same for movement between junior and intermediate.
Our league structures are not the best, it's ridiculous that 2 division 2 teams are in junior final. Not the first time over the last few years that some of these crazy situations have arisen.

ryan (Donegal) - Posts: 502 - 28/09/2020 22:09:05    2294650

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Replying To ballboy101:  "Aodh ruadh are replacing dungloe so that wouldn't work.

Would need to be Milford v cloughaneely. Need some change because next week two division two teams will be contesting the junior final which is crazy.

I remember the junior final was always played between two division four teams. Whole thing needs re worked. It's easier to stay at senior championship than get promoted. Six chances to win a game."
Right you are,

I think we have to be open to changes for the better. It might not sit well with some senior clubs who are hovering dangerously close to the trap door but you can't please everyone.

I'd imagine Aodh Ruadh will push on now in 2021. As a youngster they were always a very strong senior team. It's good to see them back at the top table.

Lockjaw (Donegal) - Posts: 7302 - 29/09/2020 11:54:30    2294709

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Replying To ryan:  "100% in agreement.
Needs to be a senior league of 16 teams
Intermediate league of 12 teams
Junior league of 12 teams
Teams have 2 chances to move up or down a grade. If u win the intermediate league or intermediate championship u get promoted to senior. If same team wins both the intermediate league and championship, the team that finishes 2nd in league moves up to senior. U get relegated from senior if u finish bottom of league or lose the championship relegation like Dungloe this year. If same team finishes bottom of senior league and senior championship, the team 2nd from bottom in senior league moves down to intermediate. Same for movement between junior and intermediate.
Our league structures are not the best, it's ridiculous that 2 division 2 teams are in junior final. Not the first time over the last few years that some of these crazy situations have arisen."
This isn't a bad idea. I think it could work and it's definitely a better system that needs to be looked at. I read on another page that Carryduff were allowed promotion to Senior championship in Down having won Division 2 but not the intermediate championship. They got to the senior final this year, so that system works.

The way the structure is this year, you have two division 2 teams in Junior championship, 2 division 4 teams in Intermediate championship and a Division 3 team in Senior championship !

HandballRef (Donegal) - Posts: 495 - 29/09/2020 12:03:46    2294712

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Shout out and congratulations to Aodh Ruadh on a deserved win at the weekend. When the game was in the melting pot in the second half they really kicked on. I think they scored 1-4 without reply. The game was like a role reversal of the group game only a opposite result. Including crucial injuries but in this case to Cloughaneely who lost John Fitzgerald who I wish a speedy recovery to. He is a very classy forward but has had no luck with injuries the last few years. Credit to Cloughaneely for fighting back towards the end when they could easily have forced extra time were it not for some wayward shooting. I think and hope they will come back stronger and hungrier next year and make it 3rd time lucky. They have alot of talented young players coming through so hopefully next year will be their year. I am sure Aodh Ruadh will establish themselves as a senior side next year and wish them the best in doing so.

As for the structures I am in complete agreement that it certainly needs to be addressed. As pointed out having 2 Division 2 sides contesting a junior final has no logic at all. While I wouldn't be confident it will be addressed it certainly needs looking at.

panamasam (Australia) - Posts: 2519 - 29/09/2020 13:54:00    2294737

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