Brendan Devenney: "Something drastically needs to change in Donegal"

He was not surprised by what happened against Galway as he tells Off The Ball

Donegal, GAA,

Referee Anthony Nolan black cards Mark Anthony McGinley of Donegal ©INPHO/Tommy Dickson

Almost five years on from reaching the top of the mountain, Donegal's 2017 All Ireland Championship campaign ended somewhere along the foothills.

For a county that had at least reached the quarter finals perennially since the 2011 campaign, it was a comprehensive qualifier loss to a Galway side that had fallen short in the Connacht final against Roscommon.

Ultimately, Donegal were defeated by a 4-17 to 0-14 margin on Saturday, ending their 2017 Championship in abrupt fashion.

But for former Donegal footballer Brendan Devenney, such a result some way along the line was not too much of a surprise as the summer wore on.

He joined Off The Ball and former Mayo manager James Horan to review the weekend's action which also included a narrow win for Mayo in a pulsating Round 4 qualifier against Cork.

Devenney said: "There's huge uproar in Donegal over this and to me, the only shock is that, we were waiting to get beat. Somebody was going to hammer us. A lot of Donegal people were afraid of winning this match and ending up playing Kerry and getting annihilated then. Nobody seen this coming at this level but I think with Donegal, I think the season was over once Tyrone beat us. Basically, we were going to be hammered by somebody or we were going to lose to a team that should be below us. So I'm not that overly surprised about it."

He added that "something drastically needs to change in Donegal" and that they "need a real direction now". 

On the manager Rory Gallagher, Devenney explained that the players hold him in high regard: "The boys like him. There's no issue from the squad in terms of guys giving out about him or the Fermanagh situation where they're going to vote him out. The guys like him. I think what's happened with Rory, Rory is very good at certain things. He's definitely a good coach and he has good aspects. But certainly, Donegal at the minute, the overall thing isn't pulling together, it isn't happening and whether that needs somebody else to come in and help him... but it's not like if the players have an issue with him, so that's important to note."   

Horan also shared his optimism in regards to a young Donegal side being better in future for the experience for the Championships to come.

You can listen to the full Football Review with James Horan and Devenney on the podcast player or stream/download/subscribe on iTunes.