LMFM MFC Previews Div 2-6

Thu 10th Sep

LMFM MFC Previews Div 2-6

The action hots up in Division 6 of the LMFM MFC this weekend as we have the penultimate round of the group stage while in Divisions 2-5, we are at the semi-final stage in the Championship and Shield.  Who will be looking forward to the finals in a few weeks’ time and whose Championship will have come to an end by the time the games have concluded on Saturday?

 

 Division 2 Semi-Finals

 

Friday September 11 – 19:30

Killary Emmets v Navan O’Mahonys (Extra-Time if necessary)

Referee – Martin Dawson (St. Michael’s)

Venue – Castletown

 

Path to the semi-final: Killary Emmets

Rd. 1 Killary Emmets (2-14) (0-11) Donaghmore / Ashbourne Venue – Castletown
Rd. 2 Killary Emmets (2-14) (0-04) Trim Venue – Trim
Rd. 2 Killary Emmets (2-14) (0-04) Trim Venue – Trim
Rd. 3 Killary Emmets (1-14) (2-07) Seneschalstown Venue – Castletown
Total Killary Emmets (5-42) (2-22) Opposition

  

Path to the semi-final: Navan O’Mahonys

Rd. 1 Navan O’Mahonys (3-12) (2-16) Kilbride Venue – Paddy O’Brien Park
Rd. 2 Navan O’Mahonys (2-14) (2-07) Simonstown Gaels Venue – Simonstown
Rd. 3 Navan O’Mahonys (5-06) (0-06) Walterstown Venue – Walterstown
Total Navan O’Mahonys (10-32) (4-29) Opposition

 

(O’Mahonys midfielder Louis Collins in action for St. Patrick’s Classical School, Navan. Photo via John Quirke)

The race for the Liam Tolan Cup is down to the final four and the opening semi-final on Friday evening promises to be a high-quality game between two sides who have been in very impressive form during the group stages.  Killary came through Group B unbeaten to secure the home semi-final while O’Mahonys bounced back from their defeat by the minimum by Kilbride in Round 1 to comprehensively defeat Simonstown Gaels and Walterstown to qualify for the semi-finals.

 

Killary will be delighted to have secured home advantage under the floodlights in Castletown, but with only one parent per player allowed attend, home advantage might not be the boon it would normally be as they won’t have the backing of a large and vocal home support.  It will be something of a concern for the team that while they can be brilliant for large spells of games, there appears to be a tendency to fade out of matches at times and Seneschalstown almost came from nine points in arrears at half time the last day to catch Killary Emmets.  Any lapses of this nature are likely to prove costly against O’Mahonys.  Their half forward line is the line which makes this side tick and in Patrick McKenna, team captain Seamus Doherty and Rian McConnell they have a trio who are able to mix hard graft with much skill and how the O’Mahonys defence marshals them will be key to the outcome.

 

Damien Moran’s O’Mahonys side have huge strength in depth with twenty nine players set to tog out on Friday evening and have a keen eye for goal having notched ten in the group stages in comparison to Killary Emmets five.  Shane McCarthy is a hugely effective target man on the edge of the square while Shane Maguire is in fine form at centre field.  Much of their game plan appears to revolve around the talented Louis Collins who partners Maguire at midfield and if this duo can get the upper hand then the Brews Hill outfit may have enough to progress to the decider.

Verdict – Navan O’Mahonys

 

Saturday September 12 – 13:00

Kilbride v Donaghmore/Ashbourne (Extra-Time if necessary)

Referee – Keith Sheerin (Drumconrath)

Venue – Kilbride

 

Path to the semi-final – Kilbride

Rd. 1 Kilbride (2-14) (0-11) Navan O’Mahonys Venue – Paddy O’Brien Park
Rd. 2 Kilbride (2-14) (0-04) Walterstown Venue – Kilbride
Rd. 3 Kilbride (1-14) (2-07) Simonstown Gaels Venue – Kilbride
Total Kilbride (5-42) (2-22) Opposition  

 

Path to the semi-final – Donaghmore/Ashbourne

Rd. 1 Donaghmore / Ashbourne (0-11) (2-14) Killary Emmets Venue – Castletown
Rd. 2 Donaghmore / Ashbourne (3-14) (4-04) Ashbourne Venue – Ashbourne
Rd. 3 Donaghmore / Ashbourne (4-09) (1-09) Trim Venue – Trim
Total Donaghmore / Ashbourne (7-34) (7-27) Opposition  

 

What a mouth-watering local derby we have to look forward to in Kilbride on Saturday as they play host to Donaghmore/Ashbourne in an eagerly anticipated encounter in Division 2 of the LMFM Minor Football Championship.  Donaghmore/Ashbourne got off to a disappointing start in Round 1 when convincingly beaten by Killary Emmets in Castletown but have bounced back in fine fashion with victories over Seneschalstown and Trim to ensure their place in the semi-final.  Incidentally that Round 2 win over the Yellow Furze outfit was their first win of the year after struggling in the League played back in February and March.  Their place in the semi-final is a just reward for perseverance when the season looked to be slipping away from them and now the ‘Moors are just 2 games away from lifting the Liam Tolan Cup.

 

Twelve months ago, Kilbride agonisingly lost out in the Division 2 semi-final when a last gasp St. Peter’s Dunboyne goal broke their hearts in Dunshaughlin.  Now they go again and are coming into the semi-final in blisteringly hot form.  An opening day win over O’Mahonys by the minimum was followed by a clinical dispatching of Walterstown before Simonstown were comfortably taken care of in Round 3.  Zach McGovern has been flying for them at full forward while in the half back line Timmy Farrell and Ben Donnelly have been in top form.  Shrewd judges around the club have been whispering quietly about Conor McWeeney and the 15-year-old whose father played for Leitrim has been flying in the half forward line.  If Josh Harford, McGovern and McWeeney catch fire then the Donaghmore/Ashbourne defence will need to be at their absolute best if they are to make it to the final.

Verdict – Kilbride

 

Division 2 Shield Semi-Final

 

Sunday September 6 – 18:00

Seneschalstown (2-10) (2-09) Simonstown Gaels

Referee – Stephen Dawson (Carnaross)

Venue – Simonstown

 

 

Saturday September 12 – 13:00

Walterstown v Trim (Extra-Time if necessary)

Referee – Liam O’Brien (Duleek-Bellewstown)

Venue – Walterstown

 

The Championship to date has been something of a disappointment for Trim with three successive losses although their hurling team have gotten that campaign off to a good start and the task doesn’t get any easier here with a tricky trip to Walterstown to take on the home side who will be rueing a poor showing in the final round when the concession of five goals against Navan O’Mahonys proved fatal.

 

James Foley has been a big loss for Trim to date and if he is available to play any part in the game then it would be a major boost for a side who will look to the likely midfield pairing of James Burke and Ciaran Caulfield for inspiration.  David Boyle will anchor the defence from centre back and how he locks down the centre of the defence will be pivotal.

 

Walterstown have been sweating on the availability of star forward Byron Farrell and if declared available, his presence on the forty to lead the attack would be crucial.  Conor Reilly has been in smart form between the posts while wing back Eoghan McCague has been showing the form which marks him out as a player for the future.  Walterstown appear to have a bit more confidence in their play at the moment and if they can find their scoring touch after an off day a few weeks ago then they can book an appointment with close neighbours Seneschalstown in the final.

Verdict – Walterstown

 

Division 3 Semi-Finals

 

Saturday September 12 – 13:00

Ballinabrackey v St. Mary’s (Extra-Time if necessary)

Referee – Owen Ganly (Trim)

Venue – Ballinabrackey

 

Path to the semi-final: Ballinabrackey

Rd. 1 Ballinabrackey (2-13) (4-04) St. Patrick’s Venue – Stamullen
Rd. 2 Ballinabrackey (8-07) (2-06) Drumconrath / Meath Hill Venue – Ballinabrackey
Rd. 3 Ballinabrackey Walkover Conceded St. Ultan’s / Cortown Gaels Venue – Ballinabrackey
Total Ballinabrackey (10-20) (6-10) Opposition  

 

 

Path to the semi-final: St. Mary’s

Rd. 1 St. Mary’s (0-11) (3-06) Wolfe Tones Venue – Donore
Rd. 2 St. Mary’s (3-07) (1-10) St. Michael’s / Nobber Venue – Carlanstown
Rd. 3 St. Mary’s (4-09) (1-05) St. Colmcilles (B) Venue – Donore
Total St. Mary’s (7-27) (4-29) Opposition  

 

These sides met twice last year in the U-16 Football League with Ballinabrackey edging a tight affair in the final played in Dunganny by 0-16 to 2-08 after St. Mary’s had toppled them in Donore in Round 5 by 5-10 to 2-08.  This time round it is the turn of the East Meath side to hit the road as they trek across the county to take on Ballinabrackey who are unbeaten so far this season with their three wins from three games in the Championship complimenting the same form from the League, in which they also accounted for St. Mary’s by 1-09 to 1-06 in Boyne Park on February 21st.

 

That form and home advantage would suggest this is going to be a victory for the ‘Bracks as they look to go one better than their defeat in the MFC Division 3 Final last year.   St. Mary’s though are working extremely hard on their juvenile ranks and they have shown excellent progression over the last few years.  From being in Division 5 at U-15 only two years ago, they are now in the upper echelons of Division 3 and if they can replicate the performance shown against St. Colmcilles just over two weeks ago then the team in green and red will have every chance of getting the win.

Verdict – Ballinabrackey

 

Saturday September 12 – 13:00

Wolfe Tones v Drumconrath/Meath Hill (Extra-Time if necessary)

Referee – Joseph Curran (St. Michael’s)

Venue – Kilberry

 

Path to the semi-final: Wolfe Tones

Rd. 1 Wolfe Tones (3-06) (2-11) St. Mary’s Venue – Donore
Rd. 2 Wolfe Tones (5-15) (0-03) St. Colmcilles (B) Venue – Kilberry
Rd. 3 Wolfe Tones (5-15) (1-13) St. Michael’s / Nobber Venue – Nobber
Total Wolfe Tones (13-36) (3-27) Opposition  

 

 

Path to the semi-final: Drumconrath/Meath Hill

Rd. 1 Drumconrath / Meath Hill (0-16) (1-11) St. Ultan’s / Cortown Gaels Venue – Donore
Rd. 2 Drumconrath / Meath Hill (2-06) (8-07) St. Michael’s / Nobber Venue – Carlanstown
Rd. 3 Drumconrath / Meath Hill (6-14) (3-10) St. Colmcilles (B) Venue – Donore
Total Drumconrath / Meath Hill (8-36) (12-28) Opposition  

 

We could very well be on course for a repeat of the 2019 LMFM MFC Division 3 Final as Wolfe Tones come into this game as favourites and with Ballinabrackey also favourites in the other semi-final, a win for both would set up a rematch twelve months on.   The bare form shown by both clubs in their respective group stages would suggest that Wolfe Tones will advance to the final as they appear to be a shade stronger in attack with 13-36 scored in comparison to Drumconrath/Meath Hill with 8-36 while the ‘Tones defence leaks less goals, 3-27 conceded by contrast to 12-28 by the side which their opponents have shipped.

 

Those statistics allied with the home advantage which they will enjoy in Gibbstown all point to the likelihood of a win for Wolfe Tones.  Joseph Smith has been in superb form in attack for them to date with 4-10 to his name across the three games while Alex Penny, Kyle Moran and Rioghan Begley are others who have been showing well. The average concession per game of 1-09 for Wolfe Tones to date is excellent and if the defence can limit Drumconrath/Meath Hill to a similar total on Saturday then all the signs point to a home victory.

Verdict – Wolfe Tones

 

Division 3 Shield Semi-Finals

 

Saturday September 12 – 13:00

St. Colmcilles (B) v St. Ultan’s/Cortown Gaels (Extra-Time if necessary)

Referee – Stephen Murphy (Duleek-Bellewstown)

Venue – Piltown

 

This is the second encounter between these clubs in Piltown on Saturday with the relegation playoff in the Ladies Intermediate Football Championship preceding it at 11:00.  St. Colmcilles were left to rue a poor showing against Wolfe Tones which left them requiring a win over St. Mary’s in Round 3 to qualify, a task which proved beyond them while St. Ultan’s/Cortown Gaels have been finding the going tough in Division 3 and were pointless after their three games.  On form it is difficult to suggest anything other than a home win.

Verdict – St. Colmcilles (B)

 

Saturday September 12 – 13:00

St. Patrick’s v St. Michael’s/Nobber (Extra-Time if necessary)

Referee – Derek Ryan (Na Fianna)

Venue – Stamullen

 

St. Patrick’s are somewhat unfortunate not to have made the semi-finals proper of the Championship as their form was better than the results would suggest while St. Michael’s/Nobber put up brave showings in their games but could never get over the line to secure a much needed win.  They may require extra-time, but St. Patrick’s may just qualify for the final.

Verdict – St. Patrick’s

 

Division 4 Semi-Finals

 

Saturday September 12 – 13:00

Ballinlough v St. Peter’s Dunboyne (B) (Extra-time if necessary)

Referee – Paul Mooney (Syddan)

Venue – Ballinlough

 

Path to the semi-final – Ballinlough

Rd. 1 Ballinlough (4-14) (2-10) Ratoath (B) Venue – Ratoath
Rd. 2 Ballinlough Walkover Conceded Na Fianna Venue – Ballinlough
Rd. 3 Ballinlough (2-10) (3-06) Rathkenny/Slane Venue – Ballinlough
Total Ballinlough (6-24) (5-16) Opposition

 

 

Path to the semi-final – St. Peter’s Dunboyne (B)

Rd. 1 St. Peter’s Dunboyne (B) (5-09) (1-08) Moynalvey / Boardsmill Venue – Dunboyne
Rd. 2 St. Peter’s Dunboyne (B) (2-12) (2-12) Kilmainhamwood Venue – Kilmainhamwood
Rd. 3 St. Peter’s Dunboyne (B) (3-09) (2-12) Bective / Dunsany Venue – Dunboyne
Total St. Peter’s Dunboyne (B) (10-30) (5-32) Opposition

 

Having won the Division 4 title in 2019, Ballinlough are on course to repeat the trick this year but will face a very tough examination of their credentials on Saturday when welcoming free scoring St. Peter’s Dunboyne to the heart of North Meath.  Manager Ronan ‘Ronzer’ McGuinness gets a fine tune out of his charges and they will be relishing the opportunity to welcome the Dunboyne youngsters to Ballinlough.  There are talented players all over the pitch for McGuinness’ side with the likes of Louis Finnegan, Seamus Rooney, James McDonnell, Kit Óg Lynch and Leo Brunton all likely to be to the fore.

 

10-30 was a remarkable tally for St. Peter’s Dunboyne to record across their three group games but they will be acutely aware that the concession of 5-32 is a shade too high and Ballinlough will be confident their talented forwards will have the opportunity to record a bountiful harvest.  Daire Rohan captains the side from corner back and along with Joe Humphrey he has developed a great partnership along the right flank of the Dunboyne rear-guard.  Humphrey is likely to be tasked with picking up one of the Shine brothers and if he can edge that battle then it will be a major fillip for the away side.  Evan McCrudden and Jack Maher will be key operators up front and if they can keep the scoreboard ticking over then Kieran Carolan’s side will be in with a great chance of qualifying for the final.

Verdict – Ballinlough

 

Saturday September 12 – 13:00

Bective/Dunsany v Rathkenny/Slane (Extra-time if necessary)

Referee – Eamon Barry (Walterstown)

Venue – Dunsany

 

Path to the semi-final – Bective/Dunsany

Rd. 1 Bective / Dunsany (3-15) (3-14) Kilmainhamwood Venue – Bective
Rd. 2 Bective / Dunsany (4-13) (2-09) Moynalvey / Boardsmill Venue – Boardsmill
Rd. 3 Bective / Dunsany (2-12) (3-09) St. Peter’s Dunboyne (B) Venue – Dunboyne
Total Bective / Dunsany (9-40) (8-32) Opposition

 

Path to the semi-final – Rathkenny/Slane

Rd. 1 Rathkenny / Slane (1-17) (1-09) Na Fianna Venue – Enfield
Rd. 2 Rathkenny / Slane (2-15) (2-05) Ratoath (B) Venue – Rathkenny
Rd. 3 Rathkenny / Slane (3-06) (2-10) Ballinlough Venue – Ballinlough
Total Total (6- 38) (5-24) Opposition

 

(Can Bective/Dunsany qualify for the Division 4 Final?  Photo via Paula Greif/Bective GFC)

 

This game pits the free scoring Bective/Dunsany up against Rathkenny/Slane who may not score just as much as the home side but appear to have a significantly tighter defence.  Bective/Dunsany edged Kilmainhamwood in a thriller way back in Round 1 before toppling Moynalvey/Boardsmill and then coming away from Dunboyne with a draw on the final day of the group stages.  Many of their players will have had their eye on the small ball game since that match with Kilmessan having had a couple of games in the MHC and how they switch focus back to the big ball now could be crucial.  Cian Deens Crooke will line out at full back and his duel with Max McKenna is set to be one of the battles which will prove pivotal to the outcome of the game.  Up front Harry Cahill and Scott O’Sullivan will be looking to run at the Rathkenny/Slane defence at every opportunity and expose any potential weaknesses they have.

 

For Rathkenny/Slane the performances of Tadgh Martin have been eye catching to date as the Slane youngster dovetails at midfield with the industrious Sean O’Hare.  Martin has a steely edge to his play which he marries successfully with no shortage of skill and if this duo can get the upper hand in the middle third then the likes of Eoghan Heavy & David Curtis can keep the scoreboard ticking over.

Verdict – Bective/Dunsany

 

Division 4 Shield Semi-Finals             

 

Kilmainhamwood v Na Fianna

Na Fianna have conceded the game to Kilmainhamwood.

 

Friday September 11 – 19:00

Ratoath (B) v Moynalvey/Boardsmill – (Extra-time if necessary)

Referee – Tom Lorton (Simonstown Gaels)

Venue – Ratoath

 

This is a young Ratoath side, but they have no shortage of talented players with the likes of Shaun Donnelly, Chris Haskins & Cian Crawford among their ranks.  Their performances to date have been better than their results have suggested and a break of a ball here or there was all that separated them from a place in the semi-final of the Championship proper.

 

Moynalvey/Boardsmill will look to the likes of joint captains Ciaran McLoughlin & Michael Brady to inspire their side and if their full forward line of Cathal Diedricks, Noah Lacey O’Dea & Liam Deegan can hit top form then the combination side are capable of coming away with a noted scalp.

Verdict – Ratoath (B)

 

 

Division 5 Semi-Finals

 

Friday September 11 – 19:30

Longwood v Dunderry (Extra-Time if necessary)

Referee – Bernard Heaney (Clann na nGael)

Venue – Longwood

 

Path to the semi-final – Longwood

Rd. 1 Longwood (2-12) (0-13) Round Towers Venue – Kilmainham
Rd. 2 Longwood (3-10) (2-14) Moynalty/Carnaross Venue – Longwood
Rd. 3 Longwood W/O Conceded Inny Gaels Venue – Longwood
Total Kilbride (5-22) (2-27) Opposition  

 

Path to the semi-final – Dunderry

Rd. 1 Dunderry (3-06) (2-17) Blackhall Gaels Venue – Dunderry
Rd. 2 Dunderry Walkover Conceded Simonstown Gaels (B) Venue – Simonstown
Rd. 3 Dunderry (6-12) (1-11) St. Vincent’s / Curraha Venue – Masterson Park, Ardcath
Total Dunderry (9-18) (4-28) Opposition  

 

This promises to be a very tight encounter and it would be no surprise if the two sides have to play for an additional twenty minutes of extra-time before the will be separated.  Longwood picked up an impressive win away to Round Towers on the opening day, the result which ultimately secured them a home semi-final by virtue of the head to head ruling after they tied on points with the Drumbaragh/Kilmainham outfit at the conclusion of the group stages.  Billy Hogan who is a goalkeeper on the Meath Minor Football panel looks likely to line out at midfield for his club and if he and Ciaran Sheridan can gain the upper hand over Conor Sheridan and Finn O’Connor then it will go a long way towards tipping the balance of the game in Longwood’s favour.

Verdict – Longwood

 

Saturday September 12 – 13:00

Blackhall Gaels v Round Towers (Extra-Time if necessary)

Referee – Tom Lorton (Simonstown Gaels)

Venue – Kilcloon

 

Path to the semi-final: Blackhall Gaels

Rd. 1 Blackhall Gaels (2-17) (3-06) Dunderry Venue – Dunderry
Rd. 2 Blackhall Gaels (2-16) (1-06) St. Vincent’s / Curraha Venue – Kilcloon
Rd. 3 Blackhall Gaels Walkover Conceded Simonstown Gaels Venue – Kilcloon
Total Blackhall Gaels (4-33) (4-12) Opposition  

 

 

Path to the semi-final: Round Towers

Rd. 1 Round Towers (1-13) (2-12) Longwood Venue – Paddy O’Brien Park
Rd. 2 Round Towers (2-14) (2-07) Simonstown Gaels Venue – Simonstown
Rd. 3 Round Towers (5-06) (0-06) Walterstown Venue – Walterstown
Total Round Towers (10-32) (4-29) Opposition  

 

Blackhall Gaels have been in impressive form to date with two wins from their two games played and will be delighted to have secured home comforts in fortress Kilcloon for this last four encounter against a Round Towers side which has bounced back in fine fettle from their opening round defeat to Longwood.  Charlie Barker will anchor the defence from centre back for Blackhall Gaels and he will have the challenging prospect of picking up Hughie Corcoran from the throw in.  Corcoran is a key operator for the combination side and if he can get on top of Barker and feed the inside forward line of Luke Galligan, Adam O’Higgins and Oisín Brady then they will fancy their chances of picking up enough scores to win the game.  For the Kilcloon/Batterstown outfit Robert Jennings is a player to watch out for at full forward while Colin Byrne is a goalkeeper whose shot stopping ability has been vital for his team.

Verdict – Round Towers

 

Division 5 Shield Semi-Finals

 

Inny Gaels v BYE

 

Friday September 11 – 19:30

St. Vincent’s/Curraha v Moynalty/Carnaross (Extra-Time if necessary)

Referee – Robbie Barrett (Walterstown)

Venue – Masterson Park, Ardcath

 

St. Vincent’s/Curraha come into this game winless but came third in their group due to Simonstown failing to field on two occasions while Moynalty/Carnaross picked up a win over Longwood in Round 2 but fell to heavy defeats against Inny Gaels and Round Towers.  Interestingly they have both been conceding an average of 26 points per game to date.  Whichever side can tighten up at the back will progress and Moynalty/Carnaross may make the journey to Ardcath worth it.

Verdict – Moynalty/Carnaross

 

Division 6

Results to date.

Rd. 1 Ballivor (3-07) (2-09) Oldcastle Venue – Millbrook
Rd. 1 Clann na nGael (2-16) (2-08) Clonard Venue – St. Finian’s Park
Rd. 1 Donaghmore/Ashbourne (B) BYE
Rd. 2 Clann na nGael (5-06) (2-07) Ballivor Venue – Gillstown
Rd. 2 Donaghmore/Ashbourne (B) (2-14) (1-05) Clonard Venue – Clonard
Rd. 2 Oldcastle BYE
Rd. 3 Clann na nGael (6-13) (2-05) Donaghmore / Ashbourne Venue – Ashbourne
Rd. 3 Oldcastle (11-12) (1-06) Clonard Venue – Millbrook
Rd. 3 Ballivor BYE

 

 

Team Played Won Drew Lost For Against Points
Clann na nGael 3 3 0 0 74 38 6
Oldcastle 2 1 0 1 60 25 2
Ballivor GFC 2 1 0 1 29 36 2
Donaghmore/Ashbourne (B) 2 1 0 1 31 39 2
Clonard 3 0 0 3 31 87 0

 

Ballivor v Donaghmore/Ashbourne (B)

Referee – Martin Ennis (Longwood)

Venue – Ballivor

 

These sides come into this vital Round 4 game knowing a win would give their aspirations of qualifying for the final a major boost.  Currently tied on two points with Oldcastle, they are in an intriguing battle in a most competitive group.  Home advantage might sway it for Ballivor.

Verdict – Ballivor

 

Clann na nGael v Oldcastle

Referee – Marcas Ó Donnchú (Simonstown Gaels)

Venue – Athboy

 

Clann na nGael are unbeaten to date and with home advantage against Oldcastle it is difficult to see any result other than a home win which would leave them sitting pretty in the final ahead of their BYE in Round 5.

Verdict – Clann na nGael

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