DONEGAL manager Rory Gallagher has made one change to the Donegal starting XV for tomorrow’s round four qualifier against Galway at Croke Park (throw-in 6pm).
Anthony Thompson comes in for his first Championship start since last year’s All-Ireland final with the Naomh Conaill man taking the place of the injured Karl Lacey, who sits out because of a medial ligament ailment.
Thompson returned to the Donegal squad during the National League campaign and has recently returned home having been based in England for a number of months.
It is the only change to the side that began the Ulster final, although the match day 26 shows two alterations.
Eoghan ‘Ban’ Gallagher is among the substitutes. The Killybegs half-back was a member of last year’s Donegal minor squad and is a recent call-up to the senior ranks, while Daniel McLaughlin is included with Darach O’Connor ruled out because of a reoccurrence of a knee injury.
Donegal are the wounded animal following their defeat to Monaghan in the Ulster final a fortnight ago and the manager hopes his men can turn on their style in Croke Park.
Gallagher said: “We’re very much looking forward to it. Everyone hurts when you get beat so we’re just trying to get back to winning ways again. We are going to Croke Park in a good frame of mind.”
Galway lost to Mayo in the Connacht semi-final, but have beaten Armagh and Derry in their qualifiers.
Gallagher believes that Kevin Walsh’s side can pose his men difficulty.
He said: “Galway will be dangerous. When I was involved with the Donegal Under-21s, we played them a lot. Galway have very talented players and very skilful players. They’re big in the right areas and they have really developed their game.
“They have had two good scalps in Armagh and Derry, but look we’re confident playing anyone in the country, provided we reach the right intensity levels.
“It’s good to be in Croke Park and I think it’s good to be playing a non-Ulster team. We had three games against Ulster teams in the League, too, so it’s no harm.”
Walsh has made one change to the team that defeated Derry 1-11 to 0-8 with Adrian Varley taking the place of Peadar Ó Griofa at corner-forward.
Donegal (round four qualifier v Galway): Paul Durcan; Paddy McGrath, Neil McGee, Eamon McGee; Ryan McHugh, Anthony Thompson, Frank McGlynn; Neil Gallagher, Martin McElhinney; Christy Toye, Odhrán Mac Niallais, Mark McHugh; Patrick McBrearty, Michael Murphy, Colm McFadden. Subs: Mark Anthony McGinley, Eamonn Doherty, Declan Walsh, Martin O’Reilly, David Walsh, Hugh McFadden, Leo McLoone, Gary McFadden, Eoghan Ban Gallagher, Ciaran McGinley, Daniel McLaughlin.
Galway: Brian O’Donoghue; Johnny Duane, Finian Hanley, Cathal Sweeney; Gareth Bradshaw, Gary O Donnell, Liam Silke; Fiontan Ó Curraoin, Tom Flynn; Gary Sice, Paul Conroy, Micheal Lundy; Adrian Varley, Damien Comer, Danny Cummins.Tags: