\"All-Ireland

All-Ireland winner, Armagh player Steven McDonnell Photo by: Google Images

GAA Digest: Steven McDonnell unsure of Armagh return after Christmas

\"All-Ireland

All-Ireland winner, Armagh player Steven McDonnell Photo by: Google Images

ALL-Ireland winner Steven McDonnell has announced that he will make a decision on his Armagh future after Christmas.

“I’m still undecided,” said the 33-year-old. “Looking forward to next year, Armagh and Tyrone in the Ulster SFC is very appealing. One thing I can guarantee is that I won’t be playing for Armagh for the first half of the National League.

“To be fair to Paddy O’Rourke and Paul Grimley, they said they’d work with me. There are a lot of things to consider. I don’t know how my body will be next year.

“My wife’s pregnant and is due in March. There are not too many inter-county footballers with four kids still playing at the age of 33 which I will be next year.

“I didn’t want to make my mind up pre-Christmas and then regret the decision. I will enjoy the next few months and will keep myself ticking over. I’ve a bit of an Achilles injury that I want to get cleared up too and this is probably my best chance to do that.”

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McGuigan’s Choice

BRIAN McGuigan has revealed he was left with no choice but to retire after a meeting with Tyrone boss Mickey Harte concerning his plans for next season.

“I wasn’t actually going to say I was retiring, “ McGuigan told the Irish News. “My wife is due to give birth again in March -- that will be our second child -- and I couldn’t commit before that.

“I told Mickey that I wasn’t happy about going back before March. When March comes I said if I felt fit enough to go back I would, but Mickey was saying we’ll be training hard in the wintertime and he didn’t want me to miss that.

“He said if I came back in March time, well, obviously they’d be doing something wrong if I was fit enough to come back in again at that stage. I suppose that made up my mind.”
 
Shefflin Injured

KILKENNY legend Henry Shefflin will be out of action for up to six month after surgery on a shoulder injury picked up on club duty with Ballyhale Shamrocks.

“Henry injured his shoulder against O’Loughlin Gaels in the county semifinal,” Ballyhale chairman Sean Reid explained to the Irish Examiner.

“He was able to play on that day, and he played against James Stephens in the final and the replay as well, but he’ll have to have an operation on it soon and he’s likely to miss out on at least six months as he recovers.

“That means we’ll be without him here in the club for the early part of the county championship, and Kilkenny look like they won’t have him at all for the National Hurling League, because even if he had the operation right now you’d be talking about May or maybe June before he’d be right.”
 
McKaigue Stays Put

DERRY footballer Chris McKaigue has turned down two offers to stay in Australia from Aussie Rules clubs and will concentrate on Gaelic football with the county team for next season’s Ulster championship bid.

“I’ve just turned 22 now so I think I am at the right age to play a bit,” McKaigue told the Irish Daily Star.
“I’ve a fair bit of experience under my belt and I’m out of the game a fair while. I’m excited about coming back and playing Gaelic football.”

Canavan’s Rules

NEW Fermanagh manager Peter Canavan has offered every player eligible for the side a fresh start after so many rows between players and management in recent years.  “We will be starting with a clean slate on a lot of people,” Canavan told TV3.

“A lot of people would have said that I am mad going near that because things are not good there.  I am going in holding no grudges against anybody. I want to see players committed, working hard and do whatever they can to play for their county.”

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