Paul Mannion's landed the excellent point, 30 seconds from the end, that ultimately relegated Donegal and left the All-Ireland champions 'shell shocked'.
Manager Jim McGuinness had an unhappy demeanour after the game, with his anger clearly pointed in the direction of referee Michael Duffy, who had replaced the injured Padraig Hughes in the 10th minute of the second half.
Nine minutes from the end, Rory Kavanagh had his kicking leg pulled by Jason Whelan as he soared in on goal. Donegal felt they should have had a penalty, Duffy did not award even a free.
McGuinness did not specifically reference the incident, nor did he go into detail on what he called 'a lot of stuff' he felt 'didn't add up'.
"There were a lot of things going on near the end that had a major impact on the game and have relegated us as a result," said McGuinness.
"The boys are a bit shell-shocked because they feel that they did enough to win the game."
Colm McFadden got on the end of a clever over-the-top pass to score a 10th minute goal for the hosts that was the separator when the sides parted at the break.
Mannion's frees hauled Dublin back into it and 10 minutes from time they were just one behind. And Donegal were left to rue a missed goal chance by Wherity as Dublin secured the draw.
McGuinness was angry, but added: "It is about the summer for us, it's always about the summer."
DONEGAL: P Durcan; L Keaney, E McGee, F McGlynn; E Doherty, L McLoone, A Thompson; R Kavanagh, R Bradley (0-1); M McHugh (0-1), R Wherity, M McElhinney; P McBrearty (0-3, 2f), M Murphy (0-3, 3f), C McFadden (1-2, 2f). Subs: O MacNiallais for McFadden (ht), M O'Reilly for McElhinney (47), D McLaughlin for MacNiallais (69)
DUBLIN: S Cluxton (0-1, 1 '45); K O'Brien, P McMahon, D Daly; J McCaffrey (0-1), G Brennan, J Cooper; MD Macauley, C O'Sullivan (0-1); P Flynn, T Brady, D Connolly (0-1, 1f); K McManamon, P Andrews (0-3), P Mannion (0-6, 5f). Subs: J Whelan for Flynn (ht), B Cullen for Brady (ht), D Bastick for Macauley (56), D Rock for Connolly (58), M Fitzsimons for Brennan (63).
Referee: P Hughes (Armagh).