Donegal looking for first league points

Michael Murphy and Colm McFadden are expected to return to action in this afternoon’s crunch Allianz National Football League Division One tie in Ballybofey.

Michael Murphy and Colm McFadden are expected to return to action in this afternoon’s crunch Allianz National Football League Division One tie in Ballybofey.

But while both are fit again Donegal manager, Jim McGuinness was still non committal last night on whether or not his two star forwards were going to be in from the start this afternoon.

However, McGuinness did give a strong indication last night that he will introduce them in the course of the game, rather than throw them in from the start.

“Naturally, having been out so long (in Colm’s case, 11 weeks), they are not up to speed on match fitness and sharpness, but I would hope they will make a contribution,” said McGuinness.

“It is good to have Michael and Colm and the other boys, Eamonn McGee and Christy Toye that were out injured back. They have recovered and were back training this week. The focus now is on building up everyone’s fitness and hope we can stay injury free between now and May 20th and Cavan.”

McGuinness has named the same starting 15 which started last time out against Laois. However he did admit, with a number of players carrying knocks and facing fitness tests this morning, that tge formation could very well change before throw-in.

We have a few lads carrying knocks and one or two were complaining about ‘flu symptoms and really we are not going to know for definite until we meet up tomorrow who is definitely in and who is out.

“David Walsh is struggling with a groin problem. Martin McElhinney had a scan on his ankle injury on Friday and we are waiting on word from the doctors and there are one or two others we are not sure about.”

Christy Toye and Eamonn McGee have recovered from recent injuries and are fit again and are very much in the frame with Toye a good bet to make a return to action from the word go.

With two defeats so far Donegal, who have Kerry (away), Mayo (home), Dublin (away) and Armagh (home) still to come, will be anxious to pick up their first points of the campaign against the Rebels.

Cork show five changes from the team that started in their defeat of Down last time out. Ken O’Halloran replaces Eoin O’Mahony in goals with Eoin Cotter in for the injured Eoin Cadogan in defence.

Paul Kerrigan returns from suspension while Colm O’Neill is set to make his first appearance of the campaign and Fintan Goold replaces Pearse O’Neill at midfield.

Donegal (selected): Paul Durcan; Frank McGlynn, Neil McGee, Paddy McGrath; Anthony Thompson, Karl Lacey, Leo McLoone; Rory Kavanagh, Neil Gallagher; Mark McHugh, Ryan Bradley, Martin O’ Reilly; Dermot Molloy, Paddy McBrearty, Adrian Hanlon.