Castlerahan (@1.62) vs Ramor United (@2.75)
13-10-2019

Our Prediction:

Castlerahan will win

Castlerahan – Ramor United Match Prediction | 13-10-2019 10:45

Word has it they could actually be joining up with Templeport from next year. Templeport by 15. Big weekend coming up in the Cully's Craft Bakery Junior Football Championship. Denn by 6.Drung v Shannon Gaels - Again another nice draw for each side as they are more or less both through. Mountnugent by 4.Knockbride V Drumalee - Probably one of the more interesting games as a draw would suit both teams to go through where as a defeat for either could see them go out. A win would definitely be enough for either side. Shannon Gaels by 2.Kill Shamrocks v Mountnugent - Kill would need a miracle to make a Quarter-Final spot along with a big win. Knockbride by 2.Templeport V Corlough - Have heard this will be Corlough's final game as a club as they are disbanding. Here are my predictions before the Quarter-Final line up is complete.Round 4Maghera V Kildallan - Nothing to play for here for either side. Killdallan by 7.Killinkere v Munterconnaught - Munterconnaught with a small outside chance if they produced a shock win but going for Killinkere by 8.Redhills v Denn - Nice draw for both teams as they are both through already. Close game I reckon with lots at stake.

Expecting the better individuals to trump the more balanced team. Drumlane v Templeport - Drumlane by 6 - Templeport's results don't really indicate they have a team who can compete for the title.Killinkere v Munterconnacht - Killinkere by 9 - Group results indicate this should be easy for KK. Ballinagh should be fired up to make a statement but it could be the end of the road this team having an impact at Senior.Cavan Gaels v Gowna - Cavan Gaels by 3 - But I expect Gowna to give the Gaels a real scare Lavey v Killygarry - Killygarry by 6 - Expect Killygarry to bounce back over a Lavey who miss Cullivan badly.Junior Football Championship quarter-finalsMountnugent v Drumalee - Drumalee by 1 - I would expect Drumalee rested a few last week and Mountnugent haven't bet anyone worth talking about yet.Denn v Shannon Gaels - Shannon Gaels by 1 - Bit like Shercock K'court. Who is Liam McCabe?I think they changed the rules from last year because Breffni and Mullahoran are out of action for floodlit games this year on a Wednesday night for playoffs, with both under redevelopment.Predictions for the weekend:SeniorKingscourt v Shercock - Shercock by 1 - Think Shercock having the few higher quality individuals might get them over the line despite K'scourt having the better overall team/panel.Cootehill v Lacken - Cootehill by 1 - Lacken just don't convince me in the c'shipCastlerahan v Ramor United - Ramor by 2, Castlerahan lacking in the ff department I feel, and that might be the difference.Crosserlough v Ballinagh - Crosserlough by 2.

No team works harder and what they lack in a little bit of quality in some positions, they make up for in desire and honesty, which was evident in how they ground out a win while missing a hatful of chances in a real stinker of a game against Cootehill last Saturday. Thomas Galligan and Co should have the edge at midfield - they certainly did in the league semi - and in the tight confines of Pirc Naomh Fionn, that will be a huge advantage, as will Niall McKiernan's left boot which makes him a scoring threat anywhere within 50 metres. A backlash is expected but Lacken will have a big say in that. Jason O'Reilly's men have been squndering goal chances galore (it's as if they're trying to miss them! joked one Gaels follower of long standing this week) but the positive for them is they are creating the opportunities and proven goalscorers like Dunne, Paul O'Connor et al are bound to find their groove at some stage. Lacken will feel that this column has it in for them given that we have tipped them to lose rounds 2 and 3, which they won, although they were our selection against Ramor first time out, a game which ended in a draw. This near-annual town v country clash usually follows a familiar pattern: Lacken push the Gaels all the way in an ill-tempered game but are undone by a late goal or flurry of scores, with Sean Johnston and Martin Dunne the Celtics' tormentors-in-chief. Cavan Gaels v LackenSun, 3pm, CornafeanIt's interesting that after playing the majority of their championship matches in Kingspan Breffni in recent years (last year, they had a big win over Arva in Ballinagh and beat Crosserlough by a couple of points in the quarters in Cornafean), Cavan Gaels have not yet picked up a win away from the county grounds this year. That was the way of it in the recent league semi-final, which could have gone either way, and could re-occur here. Still, though, surely the Gaels - who couldn't find a way to lose for 18 months - will find a way to win one game in the group. A team, one of whose main characteristics is work-rate, can suffer when the motivation dips so Lacken must beware.Whatever happens, the Crowe Park men are through to the knock-out stages while the Gaels must win and hope results elsewhere go their way. The Gaels' famed siege mentality - which is based in logic as success usually breeds contempt and nobody has won more this century - will be cranked up this week as the county hums with talk that the champions may crash out.

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Imagine it as a screenplay; Killygarry's leading men are Conor Smith and Martin Reilly and one of those characters' roles in the script have just been killed off. Still, Killygarry made light of the setback the last day - if anything, they were galvanised by it and took control of the contest before securing a draw. It would take one hell of a twist in the narrative to save the production. The good news is that Darragh Gannon is a useful understudy but Smith, in irresistible form, is irreplaceable. They will be favourites here against a Cootehill side who made a mockery of this column (hands up - predictions here have been shockingly poor!) last weekend against Lacken. With Colm Smith having picked up a straight red card, he will probably miss out. We gave the Celts a tentative vote based on the fact that they had a wider range of scorers but, amazingly, they managed to score just 0-2 in each half. That's the unfortunate position the Crubany men find themselves in following the injury picked up by Smith against Lavey on Saturday last.

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They showed enough to suggest that they will retain their senior status. Castlerahan v BallinaghSun, 3pm, BallymachughIt is proof of what a good championship structure we have that this match is the only dead rubber of the round. Castlerahan are top of the table and will qualify for the quarters regardless; Ballinagh are bottom and won't. It's to the 2013 champions' credit that they did not down tools last week.

We noted last week that the pick of their form has been eyecatching and holding an admittedly misfiring Cavan Gaels to a draw for the second time this season bolstered that sense. Ramor, for their part, generally did not play well against Castlerahan and looked like a side who have lost their way a little. Could it be Gowna? Their young players have settled in well and the experienced heads like Mark McKeever have been providing great leadership. Gowna v Ramor UnitedSun, 3pm, CrosskeysJust four teams have taken their place behind the band on the big day since 2014, namely Cavan Gaels, Castlerahan, Kingscourt and Ramor United and there is a real sense that a new side may well emerge this season to reach the final, a development which would be welcomed by the neutrals. The good news for them is that there is a huge amount of talent on the sidelines ready to come back into the side. Seven of the starting team from their 2016 SFC-winning side have returned from abroad or are nearing a comeback from injury - defenders Michel Smart, Eoin Somerville and Damien Barkey, midfielder James McEnroe and forwards Cathal Maguire and James Brady. With those men back on board, there could be a championship in this Ramor side; without them, they may not even get out of the group, despite the excellent form of some players including Conor Bradley.

Kingscourt v CrosserloughSun, 3pm, BailieboroughCrosserlough have shown glimpses of form that suggest they are dark horses to make the final or even win this competition outright. As Ballinagh's Padraic O'Reilly noted at a pre-championship final chat night a couple of years back, when a team has Kingscourt beaten, they have a mighty day's work done. It's also worth noting, however, that a draw will do both sides nicely and stalemates have a way of happening in such scenarios. But yet, they have slumped alarmingly at times, too, not least against Cootehill when they lost by a point and last weekend, when they went 10 up after 24 minutes against Ballinagh and ended up fighting for their lives in the second half. They are physically strong up the centre - Joe Dillon was a revelation last Friday - and are a very difficult side to beat in championship football regardless of the form lines. For all their physical power and big game nous, they may find that Crosserlough have just too much speed about them. Not that we are suggesting any impropriety of any sort but when games are level in the dying seconds, both teams can be content with their lot and become risk-averse. This is a big test for Darragh McCarthy's young side and will tell us a lot about their title credentials but, for now, anything is possible. It's thus difficult to make a confident prediction about a side who are capable of such inconsistent levels of performance. That said, they are certainly lacking a bit of guile up front, Barry Reilly aside. Kingscourt will pose a different challenge. At their best, they are a hell of a side and word from Down is that Burren were extremely impressed by their pace and skills when they met in a recent challenge.

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