Donegal travel to Celtic Park for Ulster Championship opener
Donegal have been drawn away to Derry in the quarter finals of the 2014 Ulster GAA Senior Football Championship.
The game is expected to be held at Celtic Park, and the date will be confirmed later this month by the Ulster Council.
Should Donegal win, they will face the winners of Fermanagh/Antrim in the Ulster semi final.
On the face of it, it’s as good a draw for Donegal as they could possibly have hoped for.
Including Donegal, Ulster provided four of the All-Ireland quarter-finalists in 2013 and three of them are on the other side of the draw.
All-Ireland semi finalists Tyrone have been drawn in the preliminary round against Down, with the winners slotted to play Ulster champions Monaghan in the quarter final. Cavan, who in 2013 had their best championship season in years, will play Armagh in the other quarter final.
Unlike this season when they had to peak for their quarter final clash with Tyrone on 26 May, Donegal should face a more manageable run as they seek to regain the Anglo-Celt Cup.
Brian McIver, who previously managed Donegal, was this week ratified as Derry manager for 2014.
Donegal’s management team has, of course, been radically shaken up with Damian Diver, Paul McGonigle and John Duffy coming in as selectors under Jim McGuinness to replace the outgoing Rory Gallagher and Maxi Curran.
Donegal’s minors will also face Derry in the quarter final of next year’s Ulster Minor Football Championship. Managed by Declan Bonner, who is assisted by Buncrana’s Sean Noonan and Malin’s Robert Farren amongst other, expectations are high for the class of 2014. Donegal have won the Ulster blitz competitions at U16 (Buncrana Cup) and U17 (Jim McGuigan Cup) over the past two years and have a strong squad to choose from.
•Meanwhile, Colm McFadden is the only Donegal player to be nominated for an All-Star award in 2013.
Ulster GAA Football Championship Draw
Tyrone v Down
Tyrone/Down v Monaghan
Fermanagh v Antrim
Derry v Donegal
Armagh v Cavan