By Aidan Elder | Chief Sports Writer
Providing there’s no replays in the provincial finals, the back door will slam shut meaning from here on in, there’s no safety net. It feels like the Championship season has moved up another gear and we’ve got some cracking games and a fantastic Money-Back Special to boot.
We’re offering Money-Back on losing single 1st Goalscorer, Last Goalscorer, Anytime Goalscorer and 1st Team Goalscorer bets on the Kerry v Tyrone, Donegal v Down and Dublin v Meath matches if there’s a red card in that match.
It’s got a great chance of happening, mainly because the stars – and the not at all rigged GAA qualifier’s draw – have aligned to provide us with some games that should be as full-blooded as they are exciting.
Kerry and Tyrone are teams we’re more accustomed to seeing in September, but by Saturday evening one of them will be free to start work on their 2013 campaign. Kerry are expected to prevail with home advantage, but the O’Neill County have a way of unsettling the Kingdom like no other county. It’s gonna be a feisty game and a red card is a distinct possibility. Especially when you learn Paul ‘red-mist’ Galvin is starting for Jack O’Connor’s team.
Then there’s Donegal and Down contesting the Ulster Final. They’ve no major beef with each other, but its Ulster football so there’s every chance of an overly robust challenge that will end up in a red card. The Herring Gutters have softened the iron curtain that almost got them to last year’s All Ireland Final, but against a formidable Down attacking unit, it will need to be as aggressive as ever.
What more do you need to say about Dublin taking on Meath? On occasion, meetings of the Leinster neighbours could best be described as ‘boxing matches with occasional bursts of football breaking out.’ Even if there’s little reason for animosity in recent years, historical enmity is enough to ensure a busy afternoon for the referee’s pencil. Sadly Diarmuid Connolly isn’t around to do something stupid on account of doing something stupid last time out, but there will be plenty of other hot-heads on show who can provide the requisite moment of madness.