Mullinalaghta man Donal McElligott, pictured in action for Longford against Laois in the 2017 Leinster SFC first round clash at O'Moore Park back in May, will captain the county in 2018.
2017 is not yet over and the new GAA season is starting with both the Longford senior footballers and hurlers in action this Saturday December 30.
So while the festive season continues, culminating in the New Year’s Eve celebrations, the dedicated Longford players are preparing for first round games in the low key Leinster tournaments.
The footballers will be meeting Louth (now under new manager Pete McGrath) for the third time this year with the 2018 O’Byrne Cup first round fixture (throw-in 2pm) switched from Drogheda to Darver, Louth GAA Centre of Excellence, situated on the way to Dundalk.
While Longford were unlucky losers by a solitary point in the National League Division 3 fixture back in February it was a completely different story when they returned to Drogheda for Round 1A of the All-Ireland SFC Qualifiers in June.
Inspired by the outstanding Robbie Smyth, who fired over seven points, Longford recorded a comfortable 2-15 to 1-10 win over Louth before losing out to Donegal in Ballybofey.
Longford manager Connerton plans to use the O’Byrne Cup fixtures against Louth and the home match against Kildare (on Sunday January 7) to give debuts to a number of younger players.
Galway man Colum O’Meara is the new manager of the Longford senior hurlers and his reign begins with the Kehoe Cup game against Louth at Glennon Brothers Pearse Park on Saturday, throw-in 2pm.
Leinster GAA Chairman Jim Bolger said: “We are delighted to continue our partnership with Bord na Móna and build upon the strong relationship we have built since 2012.
“The Bord na Móna O’Byrne Cup football trophy has been competed for since 1954 and has played a crucial role in Leinster GAA as Accident Tournaments whereby the proceeds generated by attendances is used in a special fund that looks to benefit ordinary GAA people in Leinster who are in dire need of assistance.”