The 2011 Dublin Senior Football Championship Final will see a replay of last year’s epic semi-final meeting between local rivals St Oliver Plunkett/Eoghan Ruadh and St. Brigids.
The two sides met at the semi-final stage of the competition 12 months ago with St. Brigids emerging victorious by 1-9 to 0-5 before losing to Kilmacud Crokes in the county final.
The memorable victory will provide a confidence boost for St. Brigids going into Sunday’s Parnell Park clash.
However, Plunketts manager Mick Galvin is adamant that last year’s result will have no bearing on this Sunday’s Evening Herald Dublin SFC final.
“We don’t focus on history or anything like that. We don’t spent time thinking that we have never won it or any of that kind of stuff”, said Galvin, an All Ireland SFC winner with Dublin in 1995.
Looking ahead to Sunday’s final, Galvin firmly believes that the two best teams in the county have made the final and emphasised the importance of the championship, particularly considering Dublin’s success in this year’s All Ireland series.
“The prize is a huge one, especially in the year that Dublin won the All-Ireland. We are just thankful that we are there. We’ll prepare as well as we can this week and see how we go. As I say, it’s another game for us and that’s the way we are looking at it.”
Meanwhile St. Brigids boss Mark Byrne is hoping that his side can go one further on last year’s effort and capture the Evening Herald Dublin Senior SFC title.
However Byrne admits that if his side are to overcome their neighbours Oliver Plunketts, who boast the attacking prowess of the Brogan brothers, his charges will have to improve on their slow start to the semi-final victory over Ballymun Kickhams last weekend.
Ballymun exploded from the starting blocks last Saturday in the semi-final and led 0-5 to 0-0 inside eight minutes and carried a six point lead into the second half before the Russell Park men forced the game into extra-time with a late, late Ken Darcy free.
“If somebody had told me at half-time that we’d be in the final, I would have said they were messing,” admitted Mark Byrne. “Ballymun came out and blew us off the park in the first half. I don’t know what was wrong with us. We looked tired. I was surprised at that because we had taken it handy all week.”
Byrne is aware that luck was on his team’s side and he will relish the opportunity to demonstrate the quality of his side in tomorrow’s final and prove that their shaky semi-final start is well and truly behind them.
“I felt in the end the scoreline was unfair on Ballymun. It could have gone either way. One free, one mistake could have decided it. It was hard luck on them, but, from our point of view, we are just glad that we have made the final.”
The match will kick off at 3.30pm in Parnell Park on Sunday and will follow the curtain raiser Dublin IFC final between Skerries and Cuala, set to commence at 1.45pm.
St Brigids have scored 2 goals or more in exactly half of their matches
in the Roscommon SFC this year. They are priced at 13/8 to score over 1.5 goals in this weekend’s match against Tourlestrane.
Following Dr Crokes victory in last weekend’s Kerry SFC Final, UCC will be shorn of the talents of Johnny Buckley and Daithi Casey for this weekend’s match against Monaleen. The Limerick champions have a potent full forward line of Ger Collins, Mike Crowley and Muiris Gavin and are priced at 15/8 to score the first goal in the match.
The last time Ballinacourty played in the Munster Club SFC in 2007 they beat Kilcummin of Kerry in the semi final before only losing by 3 to Nemo Rangers in the final. Inspired by the Hurney brothers they’ll certainly put it up to a Dr Croke’s team that may well still be feeling the effects of last weekend’s Kerry final. Ladbrokes are priced Ballinacourty 11/10 plus 4 points.
Any team with the Brogan brothers and Jason Sherlock is always going to be a goal threat. St Oliver Plunketts ER are potent going forward but questions remain about their defence. There have been 10 goals in their 5 Dublin SFC matches so far this year. We are priced at 4/5 that there will be Over 1.5 goals in this weekend’s final versus St Brigids.
The loss of Jackie Tyyrell will mean that Oulart-The-Ballagh will certainly fancy their chances against a James Stephens team that must be tired after their exertions of the last fortnight. Last year Oulart lost by 3 points to O’Loughlin Gaels and the year before they lost in extra time to Ballyhale Shamrocks. If you fancy a repeat scenario Ladbrokes are priced 8/11 that the match will be a close call ie. the match will either end in a draw or that either team will win by less than 4 points.