29 July 2017 No Comments by The Northern Standard

Colm Shalvey reports

A place in a fourth All-Ireland Senior Football Championship Quarter-Final in five years is the prize on offer when Monaghan and Down meet again at Croke Park this Saturday. Monaghan have reached the last eight three times under Malachy O’Rourke and if they can claim just a second championship win at Croke Park since 1930, they will once again take their summer campaign into August. To do that, they will have to turn the tables on Down, who of course knocked Monaghan out of the Ulster SFC at the semi-final stage just over a month ago.

That came a year after Monaghan inflicted a record SFC defeat on the Mourne County in a provincial quarter-final. Monaghan recovered from that upset in Armagh to defeat Wexford and Carlow in the qualifiers, while Down fell short against Tyrone in the Ulster final. Monaghan should have plenty to learn, not only from their own meeting with Down, but from the way Tyrone set up against them in Clones, as they bid to make it five wins in a single summer for the first time.

Malachy O’Rourke will hope that the Wylie brothers and Fintan Kelly can get to grips with Down’s full-forward line, most notably Connaire Harrison, who caused Monaghan so many problems last month, while they will also look to curb the influence of the versatile….

Comments are closed.