In the aftermath of Monaghan's defeat to Donegal on Sunday, Kieran Donaghy highlighted why he believes Seamus McEnaney's side will be best-served persisting with their pressing style on Wednesday's OTB AM.
Despite their strong start to the National Football League, former Meath captain Anthony Moyles, speaking on Monday's OTB AM, criticised Monaghan's approach and outlined why he believed they would be similarly exposed if they came up against a team as organised as Donegal again.
"Monaghan are a very one-trick team," he explained. "They have this all-out counter-attacking style where the full-back and corner-backs all try to go beyond the opposition's defence and get in behind you.
"But it is a very high-energy, high-octane game and when you're up on Donegal on a bog of a pitch, coming against a blanket like Donegal's, it is wickedly tough."
Although Moyles may not be convinced by Monaghan's approach, former Kerry captain firmly believes they are on the right track.
"It is a huge 'risk vs reward' tactic," he admitted of their pressing style, "but it is great to see it being used more and it adds a lot to the game.
"It generates excitement and there are different times when it is best to use it if you can get it right, have your guys in the right positions and have all the rules and plans set down."
Excellent goal by Hugh McFadden for @officialdonegal pic.twitter.com/TR9SPapvkk
— The GAA (@officialgaa) March 1, 2020
Throughout Monaghan's defeat to Donegal at the weekend, Hugh McFadden's second-half goal for the hosts exposed one glaring weakness in the approach. Nevertheless, Kieran Donaghy explained where McEnaney's side had gone wrong and how it can be rectified.
"The one mistake that the Monaghan made the last day is that when you're in that last line of the press, you cannot let the ball go over your head," he clarified. "You have to be punching that ball back in.
"I think that the two Monaghan fellas got caught up wrestling with guys and the ball cleared them."
For those in the last line of defence, however, the exceptional distance achieved by Donegal's Shaun Patton as the goalkeeper launched a ball into the heart of Monaghan's backline will have come as some surprise; especially given the unhelpful weather conditions.
"We played against Patton this year with Tralee IT," recalled Donaghy of his encounter with the former League of Ireland 'keeper, "and we were using presses at different stages.
"He was playing with the Garda College and I was slow at certain stages to go into the press because I know the boot he has and how far he can kick it. Of course, that's a huge danger."
Nevertheless, it is one that Kieran Donaghy is keen to continue with and see continued elsewhere within the inter-county game. Of fundamental importance within the game of basketball, the comparatively free-flowing nature of Gaelic football (Donaghy alluded to the non-existence of the time-out as is the case in basketball) allows for lasting damage to be done.
"It is something that can be used to get you back into a game," he explained. "Say you're losing a game by 7 or 8 points with 20 minutes to go and you need to generate momentum, these kinds of high presses can work from both set-plays and open play.
"When you put it on in basketball teams can dice it up and cut through you to get an easy lay-up and everyone is thinking, 'Oh, well that didn't work.'
"But then you can have a press on when you get three steals in a row and they're forced to call a time-out. You don't have that option in Gaelic football so [there's a lot of potential there] if you can get it right."
Watch back Kieran Donaghy assess all of the latest GAA news here.
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