Longford result will have a‘big bearing’ on league

Kieran Donnelly and his team make the journey to Pearse Park on Sunday with one thing on their minds, a first league victory. The Fermanagh manager knows it won’t be easy though, against a team that has shown in recent times that they’re a match for the Erne men.

“There has never been anything between us, as long back as I know. We drew with them last year, I think we beat them by a point in the last kick of the game in Rory’s (Gallagher) tenure, so it’s a really tough place to play,” says Donnelly.

In 2018, Seamus Quigley landed a winning point in Pearse Park to help win promotion to division two for Gallagher’s team. Last year, his brother Sean snatched a draw for the Erne men deep in injury time to book them a place in the division three play-off.

Donnelly knows that the stakes are once again high, as both teams have a defeat and a draw in their two league matches thus far.

“They’re a footballing team and they’ve excellent forwards, so it is a real tough assignment and the way the division has panned out, there doesn’t seem to be a massive amount between any of the teams. It will have a big bearing on the league standing after Sunday. Like all of them, it’s an important game.”

Both Fermanagh and Longford’s third round ties were cancelled last weekend due to the weather. Billy O’Loughlin’s men were due to play Westmeath and Fermanagh was set to welcome Laois to Brewster Park. While Donnelly says the cancellation for both teams has “levelled things up” he says sometimes you can over analyse such situations.

“The boys had trained really well leading into it but we feared it to be honest because we knew on Thursday that the pitch was holding a bit of water at that stage and if there was the conditions that it was giving it wouldn’t be fit to take the game.

“I’ve long gone from trying to over-analyse it, if you win the next game then the extra week is a great thing, so it all depends on the performance in the Longford game.”

Fermanagh has been guilty of misfiring in front of the posts so far in the league. Opportunities have presented themselves, which is a positive, but the shooting has on occasion been wayward. Donnelly says it’s something they’ve really worked on over the past couple of weeks.

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