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What a weekend we have in store as Cork and Galway do battle in the Electric Ireland All-Ireland Minor Football Final in Croke Park on Sunday.
It is not the final many would have been expecting as both sides were slight underdogs heading into their semi-final showdowns with Mayo and Kerry respectively.
Cork put in a strong showing the last day out to defeating an impressive Mayo outfit that had accounted for both Galway and Dublin en route to the last four. The following day Galway squeezed through to the final after beating the six-in-a-row chasing Kerry by a single point.
The young Rebel side are backboned by Daniel Linehan and Daniel Peet in defence with Darragh Cashman a constant threat coming forward from wing-back. Jack Lawton and Kelan Scannell provide a formidable partnership at midfield but the real danger lies in their forward division were captain Conor Corbett is ably assisted by the likes of Patrick Campbell, Michael O’Neill and Jack Cahalane.
How about that from Cork’s full-back Daniel Linehan! 🙌🏻🔥
— Pundit Arena (@PunditArena) August 10, 2019
Ruairí King and Ethan Fiorentini provide the protection at the back alongside the captain in the corner, Jonathan McGrath. James McLaughlin’s driving runs from midfield have wreaked havoc all season long. He and Daniel O’Flaherty’s duel with Cork’s centre-men should go a long way in deciding this game.
Upfront, Tomo Culhane has proved equally as accurate from placed balls and from play while Dylan Brady and Warren Seoige have the ability to kick points from distance.
One man who has been keeping a close eye on proceedings in the Electric Ireland Minor Championships is former Dublin sharpshooter, Tomás Quinn.
“Yeah, it was probably a little bit of a shock because Kerry and Mayo would have been going into those games as favourites. I know Cork obviously beat Mayo rather than Kerry but I would say Cork probably feel they’ve been the second-best team in the country for the last couple of years, they keep running into Kerry in Munster and then get a bit of a setback so it’s a great opportunity for them.
— The GAA (@officialgaa) July 27, 2019
“We saw the performance level they got against Mayo in the semi-final, they were very good going forward. I was kind of taken aback by how big they are, they are a big team. They have a lot of really good ball-winners and I think you could see that in the kind of level of possession they had and then when they were attacking they attacked in numbers.
“When Galway beat Kerry, even just defensively they were very solid in limiting Kerry to not scoring a goal and shutting them down. They were solid without playing in a blanket defence as they have good defenders taking up good positions and were smart in possession. Kerry probably felt they left a couple of opportunities behind but you need a little bit of luck at times when it comes to taking down the champions.
“It’s set-up for a really good final. That’s the great thing about minor football, generally it’s more open than senior, it’s not as cagey, not as tactical and there’s a freedom to it and it’s a lot more kind of old-school man-on-man battles for the ball and if you can go by your guy you’ve got a great chance of scoring and that’s why it’s so entertaining.”
Brought to you by Electric Ireland
Minor players are embarking on their adult lives. They have hopes, dreams, pressures, distractions and ambitions, but for this one moment in time, the Electric Ireland Minor Championships is the major thing in their lives.
Follow the conversation at #GAAThisIsMajor or be a part of the action; watch a selection of the GAA Minor Hurling & Football matches live or vote for your Minor Player of the week, with all nominated players in with a chance of making the Electric Ireland Minor Team of the Year 2019.
Find all information on https://www.electricireland.ie/gaa-minor-championships.