Eamon McGee is back in the Donegal squad and county minor Patrick McBrearty has been drafted into the senior panel by manager Jim McGuinness.
Both players were added to the squad over the weekend and they attended their first training session on Tuesday night in O’Donnell Park, as Donegal began the final countdown to next weekend’s championship opener with Antrim, in Ballybofey.
“Eamon has been playing well and showing good form for Gaoth Dobhair. We have been watching him closely and we have decided to bring him into the squad and see how he goes in training and in-house games in the coming weeks.
“We are hoping that he brings his club form with him because if he does, he certainly will give us an extra option for the defence.
“It’s a similar story regarding Patrick. He has been playing very well for Kilcar and he also showed up well for the minors and the Vocational Schools and when we brought him into the U-21s, he played exceptionally well.
“Like Eamonn, we have taken him to see how he goes, but he is a fine young footballer and we feel he can do a job for us down the road in the championship.”
McGee was a regular member of the team for a number of years but was omitted from McGuinness’ first squad when he first took over the job. The defender did not play any part in the Dr. McKenna Cup or the run to the Division Two National Football League title.
However, he has really impressed for Gaoth Dobhair in the All County League and has earned the recall on the back of that good form.
McBrearty, who is also a member of Charlie Mulgrew’s county minor squad, is one of the finest young footballers to emerge on the Donegal scene since Michael Murphy, who was also drafted into the senior squad by Brian McIvor when still a minor.
With Donegal also having ambitions at minor level, it promises to be a busy summer for the 18-year-old Kiclar man, who last year was a target of the controversial Australian Rules agent Ricky Nixon.
The Donegal boss has also confirmed that Paul McGinley, Killybegs and Eddie Kelly, Urris have been dropped from the squad.
“The two lads are working and living in Dublin and just cannot give the commitment required,” the manager explained. “We do a lot of our hard training during the week and it is not possible for either Paul or Eddie to attend training during the week so as a consequence, they would really struggle to keep up their fitness levels. It is unfortunate but we had to let them go.”
Meanwhile, McGuinness will takes his entire squad out of the county this weekend - Friday to Sunday - for a training camp to put the finishing touches to their championship preparations and their clash with Antrim on Sunday week.