Saturday 21 April 2018

Body in best nick for three years - Lacey

Karl Lacey: No injury worries
Karl Lacey: No injury worries
Colm Keys

Colm Keys

Donegal's defensive stalwart Karl Lacey reckons his body is enjoying its best run in almost three years.

Lacey has spent the last two League campaigns shaking off a series of injuries but feels he has now put the worst behind him.

The former Footballer of the Year has been curtailed by hip, knee and groin injuries since Donegal's All-Ireland triumph in 2012 but can now see some open road ahead of him as they prepare for a Division 1 semi-final against Cork next weekend.

"I'm happy with where I'm at. I have done a lot more this season than I have in the last two years in terms of pre-season," he said.

Lacey was pivotal to Donegal's draw with Mayo on Sunday, their first point gained on the road in Division 1 since 2009.

He knows that getting something from one of their away games was important.

"We have had a couple of tough games on the road. We weren't so bad at home but we had Kerry, Dublin and Mayo away," he said.

"They were three games that we needed big performances from and we got that performance we were looking for against Mayo, especially in the second half when our backs were against the wall. Every man dug deep and we got the result.

"We're happy that we have a good League campaign behind us and we have one eye on Tyrone (in the Championship) now."

Getting a draw without Michael Murphy and Neil Gallagher and showing that there is more depth to their squad was also important, he said.

"We can't be relying on Michael all the time and big Neil. Hugh McFadden has come in and did very well for us at training. Every man is pushing hard at training.

"There are new lads there and we are trying different things in every game. We tried things out on the training ground during the week and we tried to implement them against Mayo.

"It's about getting another competitive game in before the Championship. It's no harm, we are in a positive place."

Murphy will return from suspension for Sunday's League semi-final, while Gallagher is also expected back after being rested because of a hamstring strain he picked up against Tyrone.

Irish Independent

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