I Darr say we can all be better
DARREN HUGHES believes Scotstown’s county men must raise their game if the club are to be crowned Ulster champions.
The club skipper has been critical of his own form en route to today’s provincial showdown with Gweedore in Omagh.
He also feels the likes of Conor McCarthy, Shane Carey, his brother Kieran and All Star keeper Rory Beggan must lead by example.
Hughes said: “When you go back after the county scene, it’s not that you have to do everything, but there’s a pressure on you to play to the top of your game.
“In fairness to the boys, we take the best out of each other. A lot of boys stepped up to the plate in the semi-final against Coleraine when none of us that are county players were in the top five.
“Sometimes we get designated roles on certain days – for example, the way I play midfield for Scotstown is totally different to the way I would play there for Monaghan.
“There is that sprinkling of quality on both teams and I don’t think it’s any coincidence that between ourselves and Gweedore, there’ll be about 12, 14 county players on show.”
Hughes reckons today’s Ulster club final will have to be something special to make it to the top of his favourite football moments.
Winning a first provincial title with Scotstown might just make it to number one, but he can’t be sure.
“I still put it on record that the best day I ever had on a football pitch was the 2013 Ulster final against Donegal,” says the Monaghan star.
“To be Ulster champions after trying for so long, and against a Donegal team that were reigning All-Ireland champions, that day has still to be matched.
“We will see what
Sunday brings. Who knows? It might be a different story on Monday morning.” CONAL KEANEY admits he wouldn’t have complained if Ballyboden St Enda’s had been dumped out of the Leinster club championship by Coolderry.
The sides played out one of the great club games over almost 100 minutes at Parnell Park, with the scores finishing 5-28 to 5-25 – a total of 83 points.
Keaney was one of four players sent off while Colm Basquel hit 3-3 on his debut and Brian Carroll (right) scored 2-16 on an epic afternoon.
Keaney said: “It was frustrating really, I didn’t think we had any bleeding backs at all, any time they went down the field they seemed to get a goal. Any high ball in, back of the net.
“No matter what we did, go six or seven points up, even nine points up, they’d come back. It was endless.
“If the referee blew up after 60 minutes and they were winning by a point, I wouldn’t have argued.
“They nearly deserved to nick it in the end because we were nearly falling over the line.
“Once it went to extra-time, we had enough in the legs.”
MISTS OF TIME Conal Keaney has faced Ballyhale boss Henry Shefflin many times over theyears
IT IS TIME TO STEP UP Scotstown’s Darren Hughes