ODHRÁN McFadden-Ferry will be absent from Donegal’s defence of the Ulster SFC crown, it has been confirmed.
The Gaoth Dobhair man is preparing to go on an overseas mission with the Irish Defence Forces.
McFadden-Ferry is a solider based at Finner Camp and will go to the Lebanon next month with the 28th Infantry Battalion on a peacekeeping mission.
McFadden-Ferry started all five of Donegal’s Division 1 games earlier this year, but was absent from the panel for Sunday’s win over Tyrone.
Donegal manager Declan Bonner has confirmed that the tough-tackling defender will be out of his plans for several months.
“When one door closes, another opens,” Bonner said.
“He is a loss and we wish him well on his travels. He’s in a 14-day quarantine now so he’ll be missing.”
The Gaoth Dobhair man made his Donegal debut in the 2019 Ulster final win over Cavan having caught the eye during his club’s march to the Ulster club SFC crown in 2018.
Bonner said: “It opens the door for someone else now to take on the mantle. We knew it was going to happen. I have known that for a number of months now.”
Donegal made safe their place in Division 1 thanks to a 2-17 to 2-13 win over Tyrone on Sunday.
They face Kerry in Tralee on Saturday before hosting Tyrone again on Sunday-week to begin their quest for a third Ulster title in a row.
Bonner remains hopeful of being able to call upon Patrick McBrearty and Michael Langan, who are both nursing injuries.
Bonner said: “It’s one thing having them ready, but we will need them at match speed too. It’s not as simple as coming back in, doing a session and playing.
“It’s a difficult balancing act to get lads up to speed. The match at the weekend will be important for that.”
Naomh Conaill’s Eoghan McGettigan and St Euan’s Conor O’Donnell also have knocks and Bonner added: “It’s nothing too serious, but one may travel at the weekend, depending on how they get on. It’s just coming back from the club season and going into the inter-county season, that little step up. It won’t keep them out of the Championship.”Tags: