Danny Cullen will once again be a key man for Donegal
Donegal, after two seasons in Division 2B, are back down in the old familiar stomping ground of Division 3A this season.
In a revamped league, Division 3A will be played over a double round of home and away games with each team playing six games.
Donegal, Louth, Monaghan and Tyrone makecup the 2017 Division. Ardal McDermott from Burt, is wearing the manager’s bib once again.
And with the exception of Ciaran Mathewson, who is on peacekeeping duties with the Irish army, all of last year’s squad are back on board again for this season.
McDermott blooded a number of young players last season and he has added another injection of youth into his squad for the coming season.
Jamie De Ward, Sean MacCumhaill’s; Ciaran Rami, Aodh Ruadh; Ciaran Kelly, St Eunan’s; Aidan Stokes and Paddy Wilson, Buncrana and Dean McDevitt are among the new faces in this years squad.
The squad has also been boosted by the return of Burt’s Enda McDermott. McDermott missed all of last season following cruciate surgery.
The team will be backboned by Jamsie Donnelly, Justin McGhee, Niall Cleary, Paul Sheridan, Lee Henderson, Danny Cullen, Sean McVeigh, Paddy Hannigan, Christy and Ronan McDermott.
Ardal McDermott will hope to use the league to give the young players the chance to integrate and give them as much game time as possible.
A good league run and qualification for the final and promotion back up to Division 2B once more, will be high on the agenda for McDermott and his management team.
He will also be anxious to use the league to build a team for the championship and the Nicky Rackard Cup.
Donegal, Armagh, Derry, Tyrone and Monaghan are the teams competing in the this season’s Nicky Rackard Cup.
Armagh will once again provide the first round opposition for Donegal, in the Nicky Rackard Cup.
This game is at the end of April with Donegal at home.
Donegal begin their league campaign next Sunday at home in O’Donnell Park against Louth, the first of six games in the space of seven weeks.
Their final game in the series is away to Louth on March 26th, in Darver, the Louth County Training Centre.
The Division 3A final is fixed for the following weekend, Saturday, April 1st.
Donegal ,on the back of the experienced gained in the higher Division 2B over the last two seasons, will be one of the favourites for the Division 3 title.
Tyrone and Louth will be the other contenders though the home and away format and the extra game adds a new dimension this season.