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Burns remains optimistic despite missing star men

Down manager Eamonn Burns obviously believes strongly in the theory that it's better to light a candle than curse the darkness.

He may be without two of his most gifted forwards in Donal O'Hare and Ryan Johnston for tomorrow's vital clash with Monaghan in Clones but he is far from wringing his hands in despair.

Instead, Burns having fully absorbed his side's lack-lustre display against Donegal in their opening game last weekend, is optimistic that they can reveal rather more of their potential against a Monaghan side that benefited from a late smash-and-grab act against Roscommon when Conor McManus's goal heralded an unlikely victory.

"We played some good football in spells against Donegal but we were never able to penetrate properly," concedes Burns.

"Obviously Monaghan will have taken heart from their result against Roscommon but we will focus on our own game. ."

A porous defence and an erratic midfield did not help Down's cause against Donegal and Burns is now seeking greater vigilance against a Monaghan side that showed considerable character against Roscommon.

Belfast Telegraph

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