Five players who opted off the Derry football panel last season are expected to return in 2018.
According to the Irish News, Kevin Johnston, Michael Bateson, Terence O'Brien, Emmet Bradley and Liam McGoldrick are poised to return to the fold under new manager Damian McErlain. The quintet were conspicuous by their absence this year as the Oak Leafers suffered relegation to Division 3 of the Allianz League before losing heavily to Tyrone in the Ulster SFC. Derry did redeem themselves somewhat in the All-Ireland qualifiers when they took Mayo to extra-time in what was Damian Barton's last game in charge.
On the flip side for new boss McErlain, he will be without the Slaughtneil contingent until at least February if they beat Cavan Gaels in Sunday's Ulster club SFC final.