Donegal to start Ballybofey work in hope of staging Tyrone clash

Donegal boss Jim McGuinness and Mickey Harte

Donegal have decided to press ahead with improvement work at MacCumhaill Park in Ballybofey in a bid to stage the county's Ulster Championship opener with Tyrone at the venue.

As it stands, MacCumhaill Park's official capacity is 12,253 which may be judged too small to hold the game.

Clones is understood to be the stand-by venue for the match.

Donegal chairman Sean Dunnion confirmed to the BBC that it's hoped work will begin by next Monday.

The work would increase the ground's capacity to between 17,500 and 18,000.

Dunnion added that discussions with Croke Park "were still ongoing" as to how it's going to be financed.

But they remain "hopeful" that the ground will be ready for the Donegal-Tyrone clash.

The Ulster Council are likely to make a final decision on the venue for the match in early March .

The GAA's 2013 fixture list released on 14 December did not include mention of the venue for the Ulster SFC football clash.

The majority of venues for provincial championship games were outlined but a blank remained beside the Ulster clash.

Tyrone boss Mickey Harte is on record as saying that he believes MacCumhaill Park capacity is too small for a game of such stature.