Antrim to face Derry at the Dub-weather permitting

Ulster U20 football championship

Antrim v Derry (7-45-Friday-The Dub)

Antrim’s U20 football championship meeting with Derry has been rescheduled for the Dub this Friday night. The game had been originally scheduled for Dunsilly on Saturday past but storm Dennis put paid to that and both camps will be hoping that the weather improves over the coming days.

Derry will start Friday night’s quarter-final as favourites by virtue of a preliminary round win over Fermanagh 12 days ago at Celtic Park. It took extra times to separate the Oak Leaf county and a fancied Fermanagh side but Derry always looked the more likely to get over the line.

Derry have a strong full back line which includes James Diamond, Tiernan Walsh and Odhran McLarnon who were all outstanding against Fermanagh while at mid-field they can call on captain and Queens fresher Keelan Friel and another future Derry senior in Conleith McShane. Up front Derry have an array of talented forwards including county senior Alex Doherty, Cormac Murphy, Jude McAtamney and Tiernan McHugh.

Antrim go into this championship game on the back of development league defeats to Tyrone and Louth but they did record a victory over Down. The Saffrons were unlucky against Louth however. They came from 0-8 to 0-2 down at half time in that game to lead by two going into the final ten minutes but lost a player to a red card and another to a black with Louth taking advantage to score the final four points of the game and win by two.

The Saffrons have a useful panel and if they can produce their best form then they shouldn’t be too far away and manager Hugh McGettigan and his assistants Niall Jackman and Benny Marron will have their side primed going into Friday night’s game.

The side is backboned by a number of players from St. Mary’s Aghagalloon who experienced Hogan Cup success with St. Ronan’s Lurgan under the guidance of present Derry manager Micky Donnelly and the Tyrone man will know these players well.

Luke Mulholland, Adam Loughran, Jamie Lamont and Marc McAffee all played their part in that St. Ronan’s success while, Pat Shivers, Aaron McNeilly and Dominic McEnhill, Cormac McGettigan, Eoghan McMenamin, Eamon Kelly and Dominic and Eunan McAteer are others who could swing this one Antrim’s way.

Fermanagh born coach Niall Jackman is delighted with the attitude and commitment from the Antrim youngsters. He has seen many of them play university football this year as Niall also looks after the Queens Fresher’s where he has Peter King from St Brigid’s and Eoghan Hynes from Glenravel on his team.

Derry will start this game as favourites by virtue of that win over Fermanagh and their results in the development league but Antrim performed well in that competition despite losing to Tyrone and Louth and could push their opponents all the way on Friday night.

Antrim Under 20 squad

Ronan Gribbin &

 Pat Shivers (Cargin)

Cormac McGettigan &

Eoghan McMenamin

Dominic McEnhill

Conal McDonald (Rossa )

Adam Loughran

Luke Mulholland

Jamie la Mont

Mark McAfee (Aghagallon)

Dominic McAteer

Eunan McAteer (Creggan)

Conor Stewart

Matthew Downey

James McDonald (All-Saints)

Aaron McNeilly

Ciaran O’Neill (Tir-na-nOg)

Seaan Elliott (Dunloy)

Conal Finnegan

Niall Ward (St Paul’s)

Peter Henvey

 Rory Brolly

John Morgan

Peter King (St Brigid’s)

Gary Murray

Eamon Kelly (Moneyglass)

Oisin Doherty (Portglenone)

Eoghan  Hynes

Sean McKay (Glenravel)

Michael Ferris (Sarsfields)

Conal Murray (St Galls)

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