Audio: Donegal manager Rory Gallagher talks retirements and rebuilding

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AS ONE era ends, another begins as Rory Gallagher confirmed another trio of retirements from the Donegal squad this evening.

Rory Kavanagh, Christy Toye and David Walsh have announced their retirements while Odhrán Mac Niallais and Leo McLoone have opted out of the squad and Anthony Thompson is another who hasn’t returned for 2017.

“It’s definitely tinged with sadness,” Gallagher told Donegal Sport Hub at a press conference in Ballybofey.

“It’s a new beginning now for Donegal. The challenge is getting Donegal more big days out.

“Being realistic, I expected the boys we’re speaking about not to be around for 2017. We knew that this was the likely scenario. We’ve had time to absorb it and we move on.”

Gallagher has 16 under-21 players drafted into his squad and, as he enters his third season as the Donegal manager, is confident for the road ahead.

He said: “I’m very excited with what we have. I think we’re fortunate to have the group of players we have. We’re forming a good chemistry now and that’s the really exciting thing about it.

“We have experienced a lot of hurt recently. We’ve lost three Ulster titles and an All-ireland final too. They’re very hungry to redeem the situation. We’d love to be back winning Ulster titles again.”

Listen to the full interview below …

Sports writer from St Johnston, now based in Letterkenny, with ten years' experience covering sport in Donegal. Was a nominee for NUJ Sports Journalist of the Year in 2010. Honoured by the Donegal Boxing Board in 2016 for his coverage on the sport.

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