"We didn't realise what we were missing until Jim came in"- Colm McFadden looks back at his Donegal days

Former forward spoke to Off The Ball about an All-Ireland-winning career

Colm McFadden, Donegal

Colm McFadden of Donegal ©INPHO/Cathal Noonan

At the start of August, Colm McFadden called time on an inter-county career which saw him win an All-Ireland in 2012, scoring in that final. 

The former Donegal star joined Off The Ball to reflect on a career that started way back in 2002 before enduring a fallow period before the Ulster and All-Ireland trophies arrived. 

"I started off in 2002 and we got to an All-Ireland quarter-final and Dublin beat us in a replay. The following year we played Armagh in a semi-final. I was only 19, 20 at the time. I probably thought Donegal was going to be getting to All-Ireland semi-finals and finals all the time, but obviously it didn't happen that way," he said. 

McFadden admitted that had the players had probably become a little "disillusioned" until 2011 when Donegal found their groove with the arrival of Jim McGuinness as manager and he picked out the changes that propelled them into the elite bracket.

"We didn't realise what we were missing until Jim came in and took our fitness to a new level, we were set up to a game-plan which was defensively for the first season in 2011 and then in 2012, it was a bit of a defensive and attacking game-plan," he said.