Belfast Telegraph

Home Sport GAA

Donaghy and O'Brien are chosen to start for Kingdom

By Declan Bogue

The big surprise in the Kerry team named last night are two inclusions in the forward line.

Kieran Donaghy has been named to start in his customary role of full-forward, while Stephen O'Brien has come right back into the reckoning after being dropped for the Mayo replay, having been taken off in the first half of the drawn encounter.

Many in the Kingdom felt that Donaghy could have been held back, with former attacking colleague Sean O'Sullivan saying: "If you start Kieran Donaghy and you resort to a long ball in, then Eamonn McGee is going to relish that challenge, because he knows he is going to have guys dropping back in there and sweeping up breaks. All McGee will have to do is spoil Donaghy."

However, manager Eamonn Fitzmaurice has sought to create a bit of tension among Donegal and starts the Austin Stacks man.

The players to lose out are corner-back Shane Enright and Michael Geaney. However, both men could be considered likely candidates to come on and do a job no matter what way the game is progressing.

Those who definitely will get some game time include Declan O'Sullivan, who may even sneak in as a late replacement. Bryan Sheehan has been rehabbing well after injury forced him off against Galway in their quarter-final and in a game of this magnitude his free-taking talents could prove vital.

Barry John Keane, Kieran O'Leary and Jonathan Lyne have all made regular appearances off the bench, while Darran O'Sullivan is still one of the most dangerous attackers around, although he appears hampered by a long-standing hamstring injury.

Fionn Fitzgerald captains the squad in place of Colm Cooper, who has not been listed in the 26. The possibility of him appearing as a sub in an outrageously-daring move by Fitzmaurice now would appear a work of fiction.

KERRY: (v Donegal, All-Ireland final, Sunday): Brian Kelly; Marc OSe, Aidan O'Mahony, Fionn Fitzgerald (C); Paul Murphy, Peter Crowley, Killian Young; Anthony Maher, David Moran; Stephen O'Brien, Johnny Buckley, Donnchadh Walsh; Paul Geaney, Kieran Donaghy, James O'Donoghue

Belfast Telegraph


From Belfast Telegraph