Donegal forward Michael Murphy has described his team's win over Kerry as 'vital'.

Murphy said: “After last week’s defeat against Tyrone it was vital to get a good performance number one here today. To pick up the two points was an extra bonus.

“To start the game the way we did with the early number of scores was critical.

"Kerry came back into the game, I suppose like any good Kerry team always do. They had their purple patch, and we were just lucky we weathered that, and went in five up at half-time.

“It was key for us to get a couple of early scores at the start of the second half to settle the nerves, and thankfully we did that.

“It was important to give the crowd a good response following last weekend’s game against Tyrone, which was key, and thankfully we did that.”

Kerry manager Eamon Fitzmaurice said his team had to play the game on Donegal’s terms, which Murphy feels was the way the Tír Conaill Men wanted the tie to pan out.

“Obviously you want to try to play the game as much on your terms as possible,” said Murphy. “Kerry tried to play it on theirs.

"Any two teams that go out want to play the game on their terms.

“It was just key to get the performance after last weekend, and I suppose try to keep improving towards 26 May (when Donegal take on Tyrone in the Ulster Football Championship quarter-finals), which is the big game and the one we’re trying to focus upon.

“It was great to see some great peformances, the likes of Ross Wherity and Ryan McHugh that have come in this year and have been absolutely fantastic.

"They’ve added a fresh impetus into things for us. It’s brilliant for them to keep pushing everybody on.”