Football

PREVIEW: It’s Carlow’s time to shine against the Model County

Dr Cullen Park
Dr Cullen Park

So Championship time is finally upon us…. Hallelujah!

It seems like an eternity since the last round of the National Football League which ended on a positive note for Carlow and now it’s their time to shine.

It’s as confident a Carlow camp as there has been for years and many feel that this will finally be the game to break the Leinster Championship duck which has amassed six years since the win over Louth in O’Moore Park in 2011.

That year was also the last time Carlow met Wexford in the Championship and on that day in Croke Park it was Wexford who prevailed to the Leinster Final by a comfortable margin.

Much has changed in both camps since then as Wexford have slipped a little bit in Leinster, while Carlow seem to be rejuvenated this year with the introduction of Stevie Poacher to the coaching staff.

If anything the two sides seem to be even enough in terms of talent and in many respects this really is a 50/50 game.

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The prize for this one is obviously massive with a clash against Dublin awaiting the winners.

In terms of this season so far Wexford were the form team along with Westmeath in Division 4 and were promoted with two rounds to spare.

Manager Banty McEnaney elected to experiment in the final two rounds and as a result they went in to the League Final with morale slightly low and they took a big beating off Westmeath.

That of course was six weeks ago and a lot can happen in that period.

Many people are saying that Carlow are coming into this one under the radar and I agree with that to an extent, but having said that not much has really emerged from the Wexford camp in that period other which a lot of people seem to be forgetting.

Much has been made of Carlow’s “system” this year and it has frustrated some supporters but I have no problem with it whatsoever because more often than not it has worked.

People are quick to point out that its very defensive, but they aren’t as quick to notice how quickly Carlow turn defence into attack which they have been doing very well this year.

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It’s interesting to hear that only 7 or 8 players are virtually guaranteed of a spot and the competition for places is also a welcome sight.

It goes without saying that if Carlow look after the likes of Ciaran Lyng, PJ Banville, Joey Wadding and Adrian Flynn then they could sneak this one, but they also have to be sharp up front and not be overly dependent on Paul Broderick who Wexford will obviously try and put the shackles on.

I think that this will be an enjoyable game and I am hopeful of a Carlow result.

I also think that the Minors have a very good chance against the same opposition and it has the potential to be a successful day all round.

KCLR will take you through the action every step of the way from 1pm on air and on the Fanzone as well.

 

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