Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 21 August 2014

Aaron Findon happy to be Armagh's utility man

Aaron Findon is keen to ease Paul Grimley's injury woe

Aaron Findon is ready to accept "any role whatsoever" in the Armagh side that will seek to maintain its recovery mission against Monaghan tomorrow night.

Findon, normally a midfielder, was detailed to mark Laois playmaker Donie Kingston in last weekend's handsome victory at the Athletic Grounds and believes that the players must now show a level of versatility in the team's bid to remain in the Division Two promotion race.

"Because of the serious number of injuries we have, our manager Paul Grimley is having to make do and mend to some extent and this means that players might be asked to fulfill rather unfamiliar roles.

"For my part, I don't mind where I am asked to play as long as I am handed a jersey," declares Findon. "I'll fulfill any role whatsoever".

He had initially formed the midfield partnership with James Lavery but when the latter incurred a knee injury, Findon was subsequently pitched in alongside the emerging Ethan Rafferty.

There was no respite for Grimley in terms of injury woes either in the build-up to the Laois game as both Charlie Vernon and Felim O'Neill were ruled out with flu symptoms.

Indeed, with seven players having shared this complaint last Thursday, a training session scheduled for that night had to be cancelled. But Grimley's preparations for tomorrow's game have been going more smoothly.

It's a match in which he feels the true test of his restructured team's character will be measured.

Back to back wins over Meath and Laois have reawakened optimism within the Orchard County now that the team has amassed five points, but Grimley is treading warily as the last three rounds of scheduled league fixtures loom.

"This game against Monaghan will be a different animal to any of the games we have played to date," states Grimley. "We know it is going to be very tough. Playing the Ulster champions is not the same as playing a team from another province. This will be a different proposition for our players. Our character will be measured in this contest, that's for sure."

Grimley takes satisfaction from the fact that a number of newcomers have stepped up smartly to the mark in the league to date.

Stefan Campbell turned in a man of the match performance against Laois last weekend, scoring 1-4 in the process, while veteran Andy Mallon, energetic wing-forward Caolan Rafferty and tenacious wing-back Mark Shields are hitting the high spots.

"Our side is attack-minded and we like to play the game with pace. That suits the players which we have. Obviously when you put the emphasis on going forward, you have to be careful that you don't leave yourself exposed at the back," adds Grimley.

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