McBrearty 'flying' after return from cruciate injury
By John Harrington
Ryan McHugh says Patrick McBreaty is ‘flying’ since returning to football action with their club Kilcar.
McBrearty hasn’t played for Donegal since rupturing his cruciate in last year’s Ulster Final, but McHugh hopes his club and county team-mate will be back to his best in the Donegal colours during this year’s Championship.
“He's doing good, yeah,” said McHugh today. “Doing great since he got back playing. He's played four matches for the club and back flying. He kicked 11 points one day.
“He's trying to get that wee bit of match sharpness back for himself. As I touched on earlier, Paddy's an extremely disciplined person and he does everything to the letter of the law.
“He's done his rehab extremely well and he's back and scoring well. Hopefully he can get back to as good as he was for Donegal in the Championship.”
Donegal’s season went downhill after last year’s Ulster Championship success and they failed to progress from the All-Ireland Quarter-Final series after defeats to Dublin and Tyrone.
McHugh believes that McBrearty’s injury played a big part in their late season slump.
“He's a top, top player,” said McHugh. “I think before he picked up the injury last year in the Ulster Final he was, if not the best, then in the top three forwards in Ireland the way he was playing at the time.
“Unfortunately, he picked up an injury and, when you look back on the year last year, at the time you're trying to say to yourself that it's not that big of a deal and you try to stay on the positive side.
“But looking back on the year as a whole I think it was a huge turning point in Donegal's year when Paddy picked up that injury. He was playing so well and probably leading the attack and leading it extremely well for us.
“Kicking six, seven, eight points a game which is huge. Looking back now, it was definitely a huge turning point in Donegal's year.”
*Ryan McHugh was speaking at AIB's launch of the 2019 Football Championship. Entering into their fifth season sponsoring the county championship and now in their 28th year sponsoring the club championships, AIB champion the belief that ‘Club Fuels County’. *