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McDonnell rekindles fire in Louth

Former Armagh manager Peter McDonnell heads back to Croke Park tomorrow afternoon.

The south Armagh school principal, now part of Louth’s management team, is revelling in his new coaching role.

“A week before Louth played Longford in the Leinster Championship Louth assistant manager Martin McQuillan called with me.

“I went down and took a few sessions with the emphasis on coaching and I’ve been there ever since,” McDonnell said.

He and McQuillan played on the same Armagh minor side and have remained good friends.

“Basically my role is coaching and that’s how I first started many years ago. Louth have given me a free hand to coach and I thoroughly enjoy that particular aspect of the sport,” he said.

There’s little doubt that the Mullaghbawn clubman has rediscovered his love and passion for the sport that was put to the test after he parted company with Armagh.

“From my perspective the important thing is to be able to assist in some small way a group of people who have never been up there, but who would dearly love to be, in marked contrast to a group of people who were and who have forgotten what it took to get them there.”

Westmeath stand between the wee county and a place in the Leinster football final.

Louth are on the cusp of achieving something that arguably better teams didn’t manage, most notably in the 90s when six semi finals were lost.

Remarkably this year is the 50th anniversary of their last Leinster final appearance.

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