Frank McGlynn is one of the last of a dying breed of Gaelic footballer.
The Glenfin man can barely believe it, but he’s found himself, in the blink of an eye, as one of the veterans.
It’s 11 years now since he made his inter-county debut for Donegal.
Twitter hadn’t been founded when McGlynn made his first Donegal appearance and Facebook was very much in the infancy when his name was inked on the Donegal teamsheet to play St Mary’s in Ballyshannon.
McGlynn has avoided social media from that day to this.
Don’t expect him to start anytime soon, either.
Like the now-retired Colm McFadden, he’s of a different school of thought.
Following the retirements of six of Donegal’s experienced men and the withdrawals of another three, the cupboard could’ve seemed bare, but on Sunday the new crop showed their worth in a battling display to get a draw against Dublin.
“There is a lot of experience gone, but Ryan McHugh, Eoin McHugh, Martin McElhinney, Eamonn Doherty, they’ve got good experience,” McGlynn pointed out.
“And that game against the All-Ireland champions will stand to the young boys. Dublin are the best team and are at the level so for us to pit ourselves is a good way to find out about ourselves. The boys have made good improvement.
“Experience is important. It’s important the lads feel that they’re on a level playing field with everyone else. You’re no different to anyone else on the panel. We pride ourselves on that and the younger players have really gelled in quickly.”
McGlynn’s performance was key for Donegal in Ballybofey on Sunday.
It was a day that was typical of McGlynn, who hadn’t been named in the side initially, but he came in for Darach O’Connor, as Rory Gallagher minds the Buncrana man’s recovery.
McGlynn played a central role in Donegal’s opening goal, making the initial incision from which Jason McGee, eventually, found the net. Ryan McHugh netted after Donegal won the kick-out – but Donegal still had to work hard to earn a battling point against the champions after Niall Scully’s goal.
“It was a good point,” McGlynn reflected.
“It didn’t look good at 5-1 down, but we siezed the opportunity. The first goal had maybe a bit of luck about it, but we didn’t sit back and we went at the kick out. We got the reward.
“It would have been a different team talk in the second half without the goals, but we went and managed the game pretty well in the second half. We responded well to their goal
“It wasn’t easy. The pace of the game was dictated by the conditions. The goals opened it up for us. Dublin came at us more in the second half. The conditions helped take a bit of pace away from them.”
McGlynn isn’t long back in the groove again himself and is tipping along nicely as February turns into March. The big aim, as it always is, will be the summer. The summers are getting short now at this level – and McGlynn is keen to make the most of the time remaining in the Donegal shirt.
He said: “When you have the experience, it’s important to learn from other years. We’re not taking the League lightly, but we’re working towards the Championship.”Tags: