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Monaghan vs Meath is a chance for both of these teams to bounce back from defeats before the start of the Championship. Monaghan lost to Kerry last weekend, while a spirited Meath team fell to Dublin.
The Farney men had a chance to distance themselves from relegation last weekend but failed to take it. They came up three points shy of Kerry after poor accuracy in front of the posts left them chasing the game.
Conor McManus was sprung from the bench for the second-half. Despite adding 0-5, Kerry kept tacking on scores at the other end.
He could feature from the start against Meath. As a result, he will draw Meath’s primary attention, allowing Monaghan’s other forwards to step up.
Meath offered a spirited showing against Dubin without ever really threatening them. Donal Keogan driving runs caused the Dubs some problems in defence. If he can repeat the trick against Monaghan it will create chances. Shane Walsh impressed in corner-forward with 0-4.
Despite their relegation being guaranteed some time ago, Meath’s performances are no reflection of their lack of points. They came within a score of Mayo, Kerry, and Galway before the lockdown. Similarly, they have reason to be hopeful after their showing against Dublin. The Monaghan game is a chance for Meath to prove they were competitive in the top Division. Expect the handbrake to be let off by Andy McEntee.
Conor McManus may see more than just a half on Sunday. Monaghan will need his precision in front of goal.
Christopher McGuinness also came off the bench against Kerry. Two points may be enough to earn him a start against Meath.
McManus came on for Conor McCarthy at the weekend. If McCarthy is allowed the chance, he will be keen to show his worth.
Meath have an extra week to prepare for their Championship opener on the 8th November. Thus, McEntee may continue to use his strongest players against Monaghan for some match fitness. Debutants Eoin Harkin and Cathal Hickey impressed at opposite ends of the pitch. They could be rewarded with another cap.
Prediction: Monaghan. Meath are no outsiders in this one. But, Monaghan have more on the line and will approach it as such. When it comes down to the wire, back Conor McManus to get them over the line and into Division 1 safety.
Meath (Monaghan): Marcus Brennan; Seamus Lavin, Conor McGill, David Toner; Cathal Hickey, Shane McEntee, Donal Keogan; Bryan Menton, Ronan Jones; Jason Scully, Bryan McMahon, Ronan Ryan; Cillian O’Sullivan, Shane Walsh, Thomas O’Reilly.
Subs: Andrew Colgan, Eoin Harkin, Gavin McCoy, Matthew Costello, Brian Conlon, Ethan Devine, Joey Wallace, Jordan Morris, James Conlon, Donal Lenihan, Darragh Campion.
Monaghan vs Meath: Division 1, Sunday, October 25th, 2pm (Clones).
— The GAA (@officialgaa) October 20, 2020