Thomas Donohoe, the manager of the Killoe Emmet Og senior football squad Picture: Declan Gilmore
Killoe Emmet Og manager Thomas Donohoe said that Mullinalaghta have raised the bar in club championship football in Longford and it’s up to others to try and follow suit.
Donohoe was a selector alongside manager Declan Rowley in 2015 when Killoe last won the senior championship title. He knows what it takes to win the Connolly Cup and is full of admiration for what Mullinalaghta have achieved in recent years.
“Mullinalaghta are still the team to beat. You can break the Longford Senior Championship into three groups and you have Mullinalaghta up there in a group on their own. Then you have a group of teams that hope to challenge. We and the other clubs are training hard so we can get to the pitch where Mullinlaghta are at.”
Killoe are regarded as one of the teams that will challenge Mullinalaghta in this year’s championship but they have been hampered by the loss of key players due to various reasons. They were missing 13 of their panel in the recent defeat to Longford Slashers in the Division 1 league.
“It’s hit rock bottom at the moment with the amount of players we have missing. We are certainly stretched. For Killoe we’d be happy to get out of the group and take it from there.
It’s about staying in the championship. The longer we stay in it the stronger we will get. On our day and if we have everyone available we will be hard beaten,” declared Donohoe.
The Killoe boss revealed an alarming stat with regards the sides recent record in the championship.
“It is years since Killoe won all their three group games in the championship. In the last three years Killoe have played 14 championship games and won just 4. That is some stat”.
Donohoe has been boosted by the return of Simon Kiernan and Danny Keogh.
“Simon Kiernan is massive for us and anytime Killoe have won championships he has been in fantastic form. Danny Keogh is another player who will be key for us. It’s great to have these lads back,” said Thomas.
As well as those players the Killoe manager has introduced a number of young players to his squad this year.
“We have Cian Dooner, James Moran, Jake Donnelly and the Finnerans. Their attitudes are great. They are quality young lads and having them there has given the older lads a push on. They are an advantage to us,” commented Donohoe.
Emmet Og also have a number of excellent experienced players to call upon.
“We are looking towards the likes of Michael Quinn, Padraig and Sean McCormack. Seasoned players like the McGoldrick brothers. It’s about getting the right mix.”
For Donohoe it’s all about the first game against Carrickedmond and he is not looking any further. He is well aware of the threat that Maurice O’Connor’s side will pose.
“All we are thinking about is Carrickedmond. We are not looking ahead. We will take it one step at a time. They have exceptional players and two very good young lads in Eoghan McCormack and Aidan McGuire.”