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ClubSpotting with Michael Langan

Donegal have been a source of intrigue over the last few seasons. For a couple of seasons, they were the only team capable of toppling the Dubs in many people’s eyes. Perhaps that was their undoing in that they had one eye looking further up the road. One positive however is the ascension of Michael Langan. Donegal may have exited the championship in the early stages this year but Langan’s performances were that impressive that he earned himself an All-Star nomination. Standing up in key fixtures while Michael Murphy was absent, he has moulded into his natural successor when he decides to step aside. This week we went to the St. Michael’s club to go Clubspotting with Michael Langan.

What are your first memories of your club St. Michaels?

My earliest memories of my club would be going down to watch the seniors play on Sundays with my parents. A lot of the time myself and my friends would end up playing soccer on the training pitch and miss most of the senior game. Another memory that comes to mind is travelling around the county to play in underage blitz. Looking back now you realise that they meant nothing, but at the time they all felt like All Ireland Finals.

Who were your sporting idols growing up?

My sporting idols growing up were Christy Toye and Colm McFadden. They were the two club players playing for Donegal at the time and I always wanted to follow in their footsteps and represent my county. We were lucky in St. Michaels to have some of the best players to ever play for the Donegal in our club. Even to this day they are playing for the club and are as important as ever.

What has been the proudest moment of your playing career?

The proudest moment I would have to say was winning my first Ulster Championship in 2018. Growing up and attending all the Donegal games with my family and watching Donegal winning Ulster Championships from the terraces, I thought to myself ‘I wanted to be part of that' . To finally achieve that in 2018 and to share it with my family on the pitch after the final whistle was a special moment.

Toughest opponent you have faced?

I’ve faced many tough players but the one that springs to mind is definitely Brian Fenton. He’s such an all-round good player with very few weaknesses. He’s so powerful and difficult to stop. What he has gone and achieved in the games speaks for itself and it was nice to measure myself against him to see what level my own game was at.

Best Player you have played with?

Best player I’ve played with is Michael Murphy. I don’t think I need to explain that answer and I can’t speak highly enough of him. He’s just the ultimate footballer and would do absolutely anything to win. His leadership skills and dedication to the game really struck me when I first joined the Donegal panel, and it has been fantastic to be able to play alongside him.

Any pre-game rituals or superstitions?

I don’t have any pre-game rituals or superstitions, I’m not a superstitious person. On game days, I spend a lot of time thinking about the game and putting myself in scenarios I feel might happen in the game.

What are your hopes and ambitions for the remainder of the season?

St. Michaels have just qualified from the group stages, and we are currently preparing for a quarter-final. We are putting a massive focus on this game and haven’t really thought past it. The plan is to try to keep winning games and if that takes up to a final then that would be unbelievable. It is very enjoyable to be able to play and share the pitch with the boys I have grown up with.

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