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Wicklow enter this Leinster quarter-final with a game already under the belt. Last weekend they knocked out Wexford to get their Championship campaign underway. But, Meath will be a much tougher test. Despite being relegated from Division 1 with no wins, Meath performed impressively against many big teams.
Wicklow proved too good for Wexford last weekend. Previously, they had beaten their southern rivals by three points to win promotion from Division 4. Last Sunday, they were even more convincing and won by four.
This time around, they had just 0-2 after 27 minutes versus Wexford’s 0-6. However, they won the rest of the game by 2-7 to 0-5.
Davy Burke kept faith in his League team and made just one change. James Sheeran replaced Eoin Darcy.
Niall Donnelly’s goal on 34 minutes was crucial for Wicklow as it kept them in touch just before the break. But, Wexford stretched the lead to three points again and it wasn’t until the 54th minute that Wicklow finally hit the front.
Then, in the 57th minute, Wicklow capitalised on Wexford being down to 13 men and Conor Byrne raised their second green flag. Desperation followed from Wexford but Wicklow tagged on a couple of insurance points in injury time.
The two goals will be something Davy Burke wants his team to try and replicate this Sunday. Meath are a strong team and it’s likely that Wicklow will need to find the net once if they are to advance.
Could Meath be a Dark Horse?
Since the restart, Meath lost to Dublin and drew with Monaghan in the League. The latter was their only point in the League but that doesn’t necessarily reflect their performances. In fact, they pushed Dublin for 70 minutes in the first game back and often looked very dangerous going forward. Likewise, they looked beat against Monaghan but never gave up and a late Jordan Morris point sealed a draw.
The Royal county were finalists in Leinster last year but scored just 0-4 against the Dubs. After the League game two weeks ago they will take heart in the improved scoreline. Andy McEntee will be itching for another shot at the holders but first they must see off Wicklow.
Paddy Power expect Meath to advance. They have last year’s Super 8 contenders at 1/12. Wicklow are 7/1 and a draw is 16/1.
The game is live on GAAGo.
Meath: Mark Brennan; Seamus Lavin, Conor McGill, David Toner; Donal Keogan, Shane McEntee, Matthew Costello; Bryan Menton, Ronan Jones; Cillian O’Sullivan, Bryan McMahon, Ronan Ryan; Jordan Morris, Shane Walsh, Thomas O’Reilly.
Subs: Andrew Colgan, Gavin McCoy, Cathal Hickey, Eoin Harkin, Brian Conlon, Ethan Devine, Joey Wallace, Jason Scully, James Conlon, Donal Lenihan, Darragh Campion.
Wicklow : Mark Jackson; Patrick O’Keane, Jamie Snell, Eoin Murtagh; Andy Maher, Niall Donnelly, David Devereux; Padraig O’Toole, Dean Healy; Rory Finn, Mark Kenny, Darren Hayden; Eoin Darcy, Seanie Furlong, Gearoid Murphy
Leinster Football Championship Quarter-Final: Wicklow vs Meath, Sunday, November 8th, 13:30 (Aughrim).
And with that our Leinster GAA Senior Football Championship Quarter Final line up is set
— Leinster GAA (@gaaleinster) November 1, 2020