HomeFootballMcDonagh and Tailteann Cup previews: team news, TV details, throw-in times

McDonagh and Tailteann Cup previews: team news, TV details, throw-in times


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McDonagh Cup Final SHC

Laois v Offaly, Croke Park, 3.30 (Live on RTÉ2) – The midland neighbours meet for the second time this season with Laois having won the opening encounter, which was important to them because they lost the same encounter last year and fell away badly afterwards. Offaly are on the crest of an underage wave which broke last weekend with the county’s first under-20 All-Ireland, a thoroughly deserved defeat of Tipperary. Four of those players are named for the final, which carries with it promotion to the Leinster championship next season and the more dubious fate of facing Cork in this year’s All-Ireland preliminary quarter-final. Maybe events are creating a momentum for Offaly but Laois have a team well stocked with players who reached the All-Ireland quarter-finals five years ago, from Enda Rowland through centrefield inspiration Paddy Purcell and up front in Aaron Dunphy plus a bench well stocked with experience. They might just have enough to get there. Verdict: Laois

Tailteann Cup SFC preliminary quarter-finals

Limerick v Tipperary, Rathkeale, 4.0 – Tipperary staged almost a resurrection last week to see off a Wexford team quietly fancied for a strong league finish to impact on the competition. They’re up against a similarly transformed team in Limerick whose win over Offaly was the first in a year, which they followed by defeating London. Jimmy Lee has overcome a player exodus and dire league to put in a decent shift in the Tailteann. Their momentum looks stronger than Tipps. Verdict: Limerick

Leitrim v Wicklow, Glennon Bros Pearse Park, 7.0 (Live on GAAGo) – Two teams with contrasting form behind them after the group stages. It was a difficult start for Wicklow, who were understrength when taking a beating from Fermanagh and then went down to Laois. Last weekend’s win or bust match with Carlow saw Oisín McConville’s men save their season despite some continuing accuracy issues. Leitrim had a decent group campaign, winning two matches and tussling competitively with one of the favourites Kildare. Ryan O’Rourke’s return has boosted Leitrim and they can progress. Verdict: Leitrim

Tailteann Cup SFC preliminary quarter-finals

Laois v New York, Laois Hire O’Moore Park, 12.30 (Live on GAAGo) – New York had cachet last year after winning a championship match at long last and having been back to the homeland for a Connacht semi-final. This time around they predictably didn’t reprise the championship feat with Mayo in town and have been cooling their heels for the past nine weeks. Laois will be in a good position to kick-start something here. Verdict: Laois

Antrim v London, Corrigan Park, 2.0 – The second of the GAA’s global metropolises come to town to face an Antrim side that reached the semi-finals last year. They are unlucky preliminary quarter-finalists having been unbeaten in the group but losing out to Sligo on scoring difference. London had a win themselves but may have to settle for that. Verdict: Antrim

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