Sean Leo McGoldrick injury boost for Derry
Derry manager Brian McIver received the best possible Easter present now that it has been confirmed the injury sustained by teak-tough wing-back Sean Leo McGoldrick in a club game on Wednesday night was not as serious as was at first thought.
McGoldrick, who has been outstanding in the Oak Leaf team's surge into the Allianz League Division Two final, in which they will meet Monaghan next Sunday, was forced to leave the field while assisting Coleraine's Eoghan Rua against Ballinderry.
But a scan yesterday revealed "nothing serious" according to Derry PRO Dermot McPeake.
"I don't mind admitting that we were very worried. We honestly thought that his chances of playing against Monaghan had gone but now it looks as if he will make the cut all right. It's nothing serious and that's tremendous news because obviously the feeling is that our manager may not wish to change a winning combination," added McPeake.
Monaghan, though, still have injury concerns surrounding Eoin Lennon, Dessie Mone and Owen Duffy.
The trio sat out their clubs' respective league games on Wednesday night as a precautionary measure and manager Malachy O'Rourke is taking nothing for granted as he steps up his preparations for the confrontation with Derry.
"We already have Gavin Doogan out and we can't afford to have any other defections," says O'Rourke, "Naturally, we want our strongest possible side on duty at Croke Park so that we can do ourselves justice. This is a huge match and the perfect kind of preparation for the forthcoming Ulster Championship for both teams."
Today sees the semi-finals of the Ulster Minor Football League with Donegal and Armagh meeting at Letterkenny (12.00) and Tyrone and Down at Downpatrick (12.00).
Donegal, under the guidance of former All Ireland winner Declan Bonner, and Mickey Donnelly's upbeat Tyrone side are favourites to reach the decider.