The 2020 All-Ireland Senior Football Championship started less than three weeks ago and yet, only seven teams remain in the hunt for the Sam Maguire Cup.
There have been a couple of big name exits from the championship already, with Tyrone losing out to a talented Donegal and of course Kerry being knocked out by bitter rivals Cork.
Below is how we rate the teams left in the hunt.
While it wouldn’t be impossible for the Premier County to make it to the All-Ireland semi-finals by beating Cork at the weekend, it’s hard to see them going any further than that.
Tipp have recorded two narrow wins over Clare and Limerick in the Munster Championships so far but will be definite underdogs in Pairc Ui Chaoimh on Sunday.
They will be buoyed by not having to take on Kerry in the Munster final but David Power’s men haven’t shown enough so far to suggest they will beat Cork.
The Royal County face the monumental task of stopping Dublin from winning a tenth Leinster title in a row this Saturday in Croke Park.
Andy McEntee’s men produced a phenomenal comeback in the second half of their Leinster semi-final against Kildare, scoring five goals to win by nine points.
It was somewhat reminiscent of their last win over the Dubs in the championship, on a day where they also scored 5-09.
A similar performance will be needed from them again to progress, but it’s hard to see anything but a comfortable Dublin victory from happening.
The Breifne county looked like they were out for the count against Down, but remarkably overturned a 10-point deficit to reach the Ulster final.
Let’s us put up our flags and show support for our lads this weekend. Let’s turn our Social Media pages blue for Sunday. pic.twitter.com/B1XEuDIdpK
— Official Cavan GAA (@CavanCoBoardGaa) November 17, 2020
Cavan have surpassed expectations so far, and did well to see off Monaghan in the first round of the Ulster championship.
Donegal will likely prove to be a step too far for them, but if they can turn on the style like they did in the second-half against Down, they might be in with a chance.
They pulled off the upset of the season so far by sending Kerry crashing out of the All-Ireland and look poised to set up a semi-final date with Mayo.
Cork have been rebuilding steadily in recent years, having made the Super 8s in last year’s championship, as well as securing promotion to Division 2 of the Allianz League.
Should the Rebels win the Munster Championship for the first time since 2012 they will consider 2020 to have been a successful season.
However, an All-Ireland final appearance is certainly not out of reach and they’ll be happy to have been paired up with the Connacht champions in the All-Ireland semi-final.
Mayo have made a habit of coming through the back door in recent years, but more often that not find themselves in the business end of the season.
#ConnachtGAA Final #GAA
Full time#MayoGAA: 0-14(14)#Galway_GAA: 0-13(13) pic.twitter.com/3RsMpG96DJ
— Mayo GAA (@MayoGAA) November 15, 2020
However, losing in the Connacht championship was not an option for James Horan’s side and the perennial underachievers stepped up to win their first provincial championship since 2015.
The Westerners will be odds-on to overcome the Munster champions in the semi-final and will likely make their fifth All-Ireland final in nine years.
Donegal proved they were proper title contenders right from the off this year by seeing off Tyrone in brutal conditions in the Ulster quarter-final.
They then swept aside a supposedly improving Armagh side with a tally of 1-22 to show that they’re well able to play both defensive and attacking-minded football.
They’ll be expected to overcome Cavan and meet Dublin in the All-Ireland semi-final. 2020 could be their best opportunity to dethrone the reigning champions, as winter weather suits their style of play better than Dublin.
Despite losing manager Jim Gavin and big name players such as Jack McCaffrey and Diarmuid Connolly, Dublin are still strong favourites to retain their title.
Going into the season Kerry would have been expected to pose the most serious challenge to Dessie Farrell’s side.
However, Cork have made the Dubs route to glory a bit easier by knocking out their greatest rivals in their first championship appearance.
While Donegal do pose a real danger to the boys in blue’s dominance, expect Dublin to win their sixth All-Ireland title in a row.
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