Donegal footballers train - and chill out - in Inishowen

Just Kayak owner Adrian Harkin helps the Donegal players with the canoe
Just Kayak owner Adrian Harkin helps the Donegal players with the canoe

There was much excitement about Moville on Saturday afternoon when a number of very special guests landed in the Inishowen town.

Ahead of their vital All-Ireland semi final against Dublin on Sunday, the Donegal squad, coaches and manager travelled to Inishowen to first train at the Naomh Padraig grounds in Muff before a fun filled team building session at the Just Kayak centre in Moville.

Donegal Manager Jim McGuinness with manager of the Trawlerman bar, Moville Robert McAleer

Donegal Manager Jim McGuinness with manager of the Trawlerman bar, Moville Robert McAleer

Players posed for pictures, signed autographs and had fun in the Foyle during their surprise visit to the seaside town.

Owner of Just Kayak, Adrian Harkin said the players were an absolute pleasure to work with.

“It was really just a chill out session for the lads after their training session in Muff. I think it was a huge boost for Inishowen in general that the team travelled the whole way down, and it was very appreciated by the people who came down to see them. They were certainly a big hit in the town.”

Adrian said despite keeping the news under wraps the news of the 30 man squad quickly spread throughout the town.

“There was great craic with them, and they took time to stop and talk to everyone who came to see them. The manager Jim McGuinness wanted to do some pier jumping but never got a chance in the end because there was so many people talking to him, but he said it was more important to talk to the people.”

The team were then treated to a spread of tea and sandwiches in local popular GAA pub, the Trawlerman Bar.

“Robert McAleer from the bar came down and said to me he would put on some food for them so I said to them and they were only to happy to go up to the bar. Then they had the chance to chat more to people about the match.”

The Just Kayak owner said the players were very relaxed and in great form ahead of their important match.

“The canoeing was a good way of chilling out after a tough training match as well as doing a bit of exercise. They were in great form and it was just a bit of craic. They really are great guys to work with as they were well mannered and laid back.”

The players then retired for the night in the Redcastle Hotel.