With the Allianz League now firmly on the horizon, Donegal manager Declan Bonner is aiming to get significant game time to three players in Sunday’s McKenna Cup game against Monaghan.
Donegal travel to Clones a week on from when Sunday’s game was postponed due to frost.
On the back of Wednesday’s defeat by Fermanagh in Ballybofey, Donegal still have a chance of making the semi-finals of the McKenna Cup.
Bonner is hopeful of giving Odhrán Mac Niallais (above), Leo McLoone and Jason McGee a lengthy outing on Sunday.
Mac Niallais made his return to the county colours on Wednesday, but a black card after just 12 minutes cut short his comeback outing.
McLoone, like Mac Niallais who was on a self-imposed county exile in 2017, was used as a second-half substitute on Wednesday and the Glenties man is also likely to be in from the start against the Farney.
McGee has been struggling with injury, but the big Cloughaneely midfielder will be back in the fold this weekend.
“We have some players there who we need to give serious game time to,” Bonner said.
Michael Langan scored 1-6 in Donegal’s opening day win over Queen’s, but had to have a scan on an injury this week and the manager hopes the St Michael’s man won’t be laid up for too much longer.
Bonner said: “He’ll be back in a couple of weeks again.
“We’re not going to rush any of them. We all know that the League will be very difficult and we don’t have an easy start with games away to Kerry and Dublin early on.”
Shaun Patton could start on Sunday with the Letterkenny man to be assessed at training tonight.
Patton has quit a career as a budding League of Ireland goalkeeper to try his hand with Donegal.
Peter Boyle wore the number 1 shirt for the Queen’s fixture with Mark Anthony McGinley deployed against Fermanagh. Donegal were beaten by Rory Gallagher’s team despite a Jamie Brennan goal giving them a first-half lead.
Seamus Quigley got in ahead of McGinley for a second-half goal and the Roslea man bagged 1-7.
Bonner said: “We pressed up on kickouts and they caught us a couple of times on that. We were a bit naive at times in trying to get through their screen and we should have been more patient.
“What we’re looking for are four our five players for the Championship and we actually got more out of Wednesday game than other games.”Tags: