The Donegal senior footballers have received a boost with the return to the fold of Odhrán MacNiallais for the 2021 campaign. 

The Gaoth Dobhair player opted out of inter-county duty after the 2018 championship and has spent the last two years outside the set-up. 

His return to the inter-county fold was reported by Highland Radio today, with Declan Bonner confirming the news to the Donegal Democrat.

The 28-year-old made his championship debut for Donegal during Jim McGuinness' last year in charge in 2014, earning an All-Star nomination and winning an Ulster title in the process. That year, he started in midfield, scoring a point, as Donegal stunned Dublin in the All-Ireland semi-final, the last time the capital suffered a defeat in championship. 

He won a second Ulster title with Donegal in 2018 and at the end of the year was part of the Gaoth Dobhair that beat Scotstown in dramatic circumstances, becoming the first Donegal club to win the Ulster championship. 

In an interview with Declan Bogue in the Irish Examiner in November, MacNiallais revealed how he was deeply affected by the fatal car crash in Gaoth Dobhair in January 2019, which claimed four lives, including that of his close friend Micheál Roarty. MacNiallais told Bogue he had "zero interest in football for a long time after that."

Donegal endured an ultimately frustrating 2020 championship campaign, in which they were at one point pegged as the leading threat to Dublin's crown, but were denied a third successive Ulster title in surprising circumstances by Cavan.