FOXROCK Cabinteely’s Sinead Goldrick believes that facing 2013 All-Ireland finalists Monaghan is the perfect start for Dublin’s ladies footballers in the National League Division 1 opening tie this Sunday in Aughnamullen.
Speaking at AIG’s launch of the Dublin season across the four Gaelic codes, the 2013 captain says that it is an exciting time for the team after a full pre-season build-up under new manager Greg McGonigle.
He managed Monaghan last year, adding extra spice to Sunday’s tie, and — following big wins in challenge games against Down and Galway — Goldrick is upbeat ahead of the challenge.
“Monaghan is just the kind of start we want. It will be really good to see where we are. They got to the All-Ireland final last year so it will be good to see what standard we are at,” she told GazetteSport.
The panel this year has a strong infusion of new faces with recent minors Molly Lamb, Sarah McCaffrey, Siobhan Woods and Leah Caffrey coming in, while St Brigid’s trio Sorcha Furlong, Ailish McKenna and Colleen Barrett — All-Ireland winners in 2010 — are all back in the country and available.
Goldrick describes it as “probably one of the strongest teams” she has been involved with and says McGonigle’s arrival means everyone is bursting every sinew to “clamp down a starting place”.
“No matter what standard of opposition we are playing against, we want to get the best out of ourselves and get our position. Regardless of who it is, we are working hard. There are 35 of us trying to prove ourselves
“This season, before January, we were in the gym and we are on track going into the match against Monaghan. Personally, I will just be trying to get my place first and foremost.”
On the club front, meanwhile, Goldrick says that there are similar reasons to look at 2014 to be positive.
“Winning back the club championship in 2014 is another goal. Amy Ring and Fiona Claffey were travelling last year and four or five were away for the summer. This year, everyone is committed to staying in Dublin for the summer so we’re focusing on the championship and have a very strong panel compared to last year and are hopefully on track.”