Bradley’s soccer deal ends Derry hope

Brian McIver last night closed the door on Eoin Bradley returning to the Derry squad for this summer’s championship.

Bradley’s soccer deal ends Derry hope

The forward missed Derry’s league campaign due to soccer commitments with Coleraine but was expected to return to the squad ahead of the Ulster championship tie with Donegal on Sunday week.

However, McIver last night ruled out any possibility of the Glenullin star playing in an Oak Leaf jersey this summer — and also revealed that James Kielt is a major doubt for next week’s game with a groin injury.

The Derry manager indicated Bradley’s decision to sign a two-year contract with Irish Cup champions Glenavon last Friday effectively ended his inter-county career.

“To be fair to him I think he, and myself, thought he would play a bit of soccer over the winter and then return to the Gaelic football but it went very well for him,” said McIver.

“It was always going to come down to whatever he was doing next year and once he signed for Glenavon that more or less drew a line underneath that [returning for Derry].”

Midfielder PJ McCloskey has been ruled out of the showdown with Donegal in Celtic Park with a knee injury, while there is concern too over James Kielt’s groin injury.

Meanwhile, Tyrone manager Mickey Harte has handed championship debuts to three players for Sunday’s Ulster preliminary round clash with Down.

Barry Tierney is named at left corner-back, Tiernan McCann is selected in the half-back line, while Kyle Coney will play at No 15.

Skipper Sean Cavanagh has been named at centre-forward.

TYRONE (Ulster SFC v Down): N Morgan; A McCrory, D McBride, B Tierney; T McCann, M Donnelly, P Harte; C Cavanagh, C Clarke; P McNeice, S Cavanagh, C McGinley; D McCurry, N McKenna, K Coney.

DOWN (Ulster SFC v Tyrone): B McVeigh; D McCartan, B McArdle, R Boyle; D Rooney, A Carr, C Garvey; P Turley, A Rogers; C Maginn, M Poland, K McKernan; D O'Hare, N Madine, B Coulter.

LAOIS (Leinster SFC v Wicklow): G Brody; P McMahon, P Begley, P O’Leary; D Strong, S Attride, R Kehoe; K Meaney, J O’Loughlin; J Finn, D Kingston, B Sheehan; R Munnelly, C Meredith, D Conway.

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