Prior to inter-county football’s suspension, Division 3 of the National League was getting competitive. Aside from first and last places seemingly decided, the remaining six teams can finish anywhere between second and seventh. Those two polar positions will face-off in Down vs Leitrim.
Allianz Football Division 3 round 6
Down v Leitrim, Newry, 4pm Preview and live score commentary
Down (v Leitrim): Rory Burns; Gerard Collins, Patrick Murdock, Ryan McAleenan; Daniel Guinness, Peter Fegan, Stephen Fegan; Johnny Flynn, Conor Poland; Barry O’Hagan, Caolan Mooney, Liam Kerr; Ceilum Doherty, Jerome Johnston, Donal O’Hare.
The Mourne men are currently in second. But, only points difference sets them apart from third place Longford. On the other side, Cork are three points clear at the top meaning it will be a huge task to usurp them. The Rebels were the only team to defeat Down before the lockdown. With that in mind, Down would have been frustrated when their momentum was forced to take a seven-month sabbatical.
On the other hand, the suspension of inter-county football gave Leitrim a chance to take stock ahead of the remaining two League games. A draw on the opening weekend against Derry and a win over Louth in round five is their only source of points so far. Tipperary share their record and the two sides face each other in the final round. As a result, that game could condemn either team to relegation. Therefore, Leitrim need a good showing against Down to avoid an immediate return to Division 4.
Leitrim begin their Championship on November 1st by hosting Mayo in the Connacht quarter-final. This means they need to hit the ground running in the league. In addition to this, they won’t have the luxury of experimentation that other teams may have.
Meanwhile, Down are also in their provincial quarter-final. But, they have an extra week to ready themselves before they face Fermanagh. The Ulster Championship is easily the most competitive of the four. Hence, Down won’t be afraid to throw everything at the League.
Allianz National League Division 3: Down vs Leitrim, Saturday October 17th, 4pm (Newry).
— The GAA (@officialgaa) October 7, 2020