Donegal and Gaoth Dobhair are sweating on the fitness of Cian Mulligan after a fresh injury blow.
Mulligan was on the cusp of a return to action at the weekend having injured a quad muscle in the Dr McKenna Cup win over Queen’s last month.
Mulligan kicked two points in that game, but pulled up and has been sidelined for the last month.
Having missed Gaoth Dobhair’s Ulster U21 wins against O’Donovan Rossa and Donaghmoyne, he had been set to return in yesterday’s semi-final against Carryduff in Creggan.
However, Donegal senior manager Declan Bonner revealed that Mulligan suffered a ‘set back’ during the week when he pulled up at training.
Mulligan is now in a race against time to be fit for the Ulster U21 final in a fortnight’s time.
It is also a busy spell for Donegal, who take on Dublin in Croke Park on Saturday night before meeting Tyrone in the Dr McKenna Cup final seven days later at Celtic Park.
Donegal are still without a raft of players with the likes of Jason McGee, Michael Langan, Jamie Brennan and Mark Anthony McGinley, not to mention the experienced frontline men Michael Murphy, Frank McGlynn, Neil McGee, Paddy McGrath and Martin McElhinney.
“We’ve anything up to nine or 10 lads to come back into that group,” Bonner said.
“We’d hope to have those guys back for the fourth game and some of them are on track and some are not. We just ned that experience back in.
“We still have an awful lot of lads to come back into that set-up, and a lot of experience that you really need on the pitch, especially in the latter stages of a match like that when you’re looking for a score.”
An inexperienced Donegal, led by the on-form Patrick McBrearty, turned the tables on Galway for a brief period in the second half in Letterkenny yesterday, but Galway eked out a narrow win thanks to a late score by sub Seán Armstrong.
Bonner said: “I’ve said it and I keep repeating myself but the league is about learning for a lot of these players. We want to win games but at the minute it’s just difficult. No more than last week, we probably should’ve got something out of it.”Tags: