Egan to debut for Leitrim

Leitrim manager Mickey Moran has made six changes in personnel to his team for Saturday's All-Ireland SFC second round qualifier against Kildare in Newbridge (throw-in 7pm).

Leitrim manager Mickey Moran has made six changes in personnel to his team for Saturday's All-Ireland SFC second round qualifier against Kildare in Newbridge (throw-in 7pm).

Gortletteragh's Ciaran Egan will make his Championship debut at full-back, with Leitrim's rejigged defensive unit including team captain John McKeon at centre-back.

Gareth Phelan gets the nod over Enda Lyons in goal, and Egan and Gary Reynolds are the newcomers in defence. James Glancy from St Mary's and Shane Foley drop to the substitutes bench.

Moran has put his faith in a new-look full-forward line as Philip Howard, the fit-again Declan Maxwell and Declan Gilhooly combine in the top line of Leitrim's attack.

Saturday's clash offers Leitrim a chance to bounce back from their Connacht semi-final loss to Roscommon, and to end a run of eight qualifier defeats since the 'back door' system was introduced in 2001.

Moran said: "I have always said to players that they should write their own history. We have worked hard on changing the mindset in Leitrim and Saturday presents a chance to do that.

"Kildare are a fine side, they have been a top eight team for the past decade and they have some tremendous players.

"But we did well against Roscommon and know where we can step up and hopefully these boys will get to express the football we know is in them on Saturday."

This is the first ever Championship clash between the counties, their most recent competitive encounter being a league tie at Croke Park in 1990.

LEITRIM (SFC v Kildare): G Phelan; D Reynolds, C Egan, D Beck; W McKeon, J McKeon (capt), G Reynolds; T Beirne, S Canning; R Mulvey, James Glancy (Glencar/Manorhamilton), M Foley; P Howard, D Maxwell, D Gilhooly.

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