Donegal will return to Croke Park tomorrow for their opening National Football League Division One fixture against Kildare with 13 of the side that started the All-Ireland final in September (throw-in 5pm).
Manager Jim McGuinness will be without footballer of the year Karl Lacey and centre-fielder Neil Gallagher for their opening league fixture against the team managed by Kieran McGeeney. Declan Walsh and Martin McElhinney will deputise.
Lacey had a hip operation before Christmas and is not expected to feature in a Donegal shirt until April at least, while Gallagher will miss out on Saturday. Christy Toye, who came on as a substitute in the 2-11 to 0-13 win over Mayo in the All-Ireland final win, is also ruled out with a virus. David Walsh, another substitute in September, is struggling with a shoulder injury. Paddy McGrath, Mark McHugh, Ryan Bradley and Frank McGlynn are all expected to start despite minor knocks.
Donegal team: Paul Durcan; Paddy McGrath, Neil McGee, Eamon McGee;
Frank McGlynn, Declan Walsh, Anthony Thompson; Rory Kavanagh, Martin
McElhinney; Mark McHugh, Leo McLoone, Ryan Bradley; Colm McFadden,
Michael Murphy, Patrick McBrearty.