Darren Hughes and Paul Finlay in Monaghan team to face Down

Darren Hughes
Darren Hughes is captain of Monaghan

ULSTER FOOTBALL CHAMPIONSHIP: Down v Monaghan

Venue:
Athletics Grounds, Armagh
Date:
Sunday, 24 June
Throw-in:
14:00 BST
Coverage:
Live on BBC2 Northern Ireland; commentary on Radio Ulster 1341 medium wave; updates on the BBC Sport website

Darren Hughes and Paul Finlay have been named in the Monaghan starting line-up for Sunday's Ulster SFC semi-final against Down at the Athletic Grounds.

Skipper Hughes is set to make his first appearance of the summer after recovering from a potentially career-threatening leg injury.

Finlay is also selected after overcoming a shoulder injury which forced him to come off against Antrim.

Thomas Freeman misses out after having a recurrence of a hamstring injury.

Freeman was included as a late substitute against the Saffrons and made a vital contribution with two points when introduced from the bench.

He may again play a significant role from the substitutes' bench however.

Hughes recently played a full league game for his club Scotstown without any adverse effects.

A period of complete rest has enabled him to recover quickly from a double dead leg which resulted in calcification of the muscle.

Owen Lennon and Dick Clerkin will form the midfield partnership.

Drew Wylie and Kieran Hughes come into the team, while Peter Dooney also starts.

Wylie and Hughes come into the defence, with Wylie replacing Donal Morgan at right corner back and Hughes replacing Kieran Duffy in the half back line.

Dooney comes into the half forwards in place of Matthew McKenna, with Kieran Hughes replacing Christopher McGuinness.

The Farney county beat Antrim 1-12 to 1-9 in their quarter-final while Down saw off Fermanagh 2-10 to 1-8.

Monaghan won when the sides last met in the Ulster SFC in 2007.

Monaghan: M Keogh, D Wylie, V Corey, C Walshe, D Hughes (capt), D Mone, K O'Connell, O Lennon, D Clerkin, P Dooney, S Gollogly, J Turley, K Hughes, P Finlay, C McManus.

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