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Opposing team captains James O'Sullivan of Éire Óg and Cian Baldwin of Douglas. Picture: Howard Crowdy
Opposing team captains James O'Sullivan of Éire Óg and Cian Baldwin of Douglas. Picture: Howard Crowdy
SOCIAL BOOKMARKS

Éire Óg's minor footballers have blazed a trail by reaching the Premier 1 final

SUNDAY sees Douglas and Éire Óg clash in the final of the Carrigaline Court Hotel Premier 1 MFC final at Carrigaline.

It's a historic day for the footballers of Éire Óg as they contest the first Premier 1 final at this age level, whilst for Douglas, it will be their sixth in the last decade.

But their only win came in 2013, showing just how difficult a championship this is to win.

For their part, Éire Óg started with a win over St Finbarr's, by 1-18 to 1-12.

They followed this up with a three-point win over Nemo Rangers, with the result of this and Douglas' result against the same opposition, probably best showing there is little between the two teams in the final.

Following their win, they had a bit of a wait to see who they would be playing, with Carrigaline and Beara drawing in their quarter-final. In the replay, the Carrig side proved too strong and moved on to the semi-final, which was played last weekend.

The first-half was close and it took a couple of late scores to stretch Éire Óg's lead at the break. However afterwards they were much the better of the two sides, emerging winners by 1-14 to 0-8.

Manager, Alan O'Regan, said they were looking forward to Sunday and it was a huge day for the club.

“There are a great bunch of lads and have put in a massive effort over the season. They have a great sense of club and will help out with younger teams and things like the Cúl Camp as well.

“They were beaten in the U14 and U16 county finals, by Carrigaline and Nemo respectively, and they beat both these sides this year so that was a great achievement in itself.

“We face another tough tie on Sunday against a good Douglas side, who like us, haven't lost a game in this championship yet,” concluded Alan.

On the day they will look to the likes of captain, James O'Sullivan, Adam O'Callaghan and Jack Murphy to lead by example.

On their way to the final Douglas started with a win over Bishopstown, 1-14 to 2-4, but the game was a lot closer for long stretches and it was only in the final 15 minutes that they pulled away.

They followed this with a tight win over Carrigaline, which was anyone's game right to the end.

Eventually, Douglas managed to come through by 2-14 to 2-12, again a couple of late scores securing their win.

Their semi-final was against near-neighbours, Nemo Rangers, and this was never going to be an easy game. In many ways, it was a bit of a strange one and in the end, it was their goal-scoring prowess on the night that saw Douglas through.

In the second-half, Nemo took control of the game and looked like going on to win. But a couple of quick goals swung the game back in Douglas' favour as they came out on top by 6-7 to 2-13, where it's not too often at minor level you almost have as many goals as points.

Selector, Sean Nash, said they know it will be another tough game and will look to their injured stars, Dylan Ward, Pat Buckley, Ross Howell and Brian Turnbull to motivate the team. All four are out with long-term injuries and would most likely have started on Sunday.

“We know only too well how tough this championship is to win and nothing but our best will give us any chance against Éire Óg,” said Sean.

They will look to captain Cian Baldwin, Brian Hartnett, Conor Russell and Joe Cremin on the day.

Chairman Rebel Óg Central Michael O'Mahony shares a light-hearted moment with media sponsors Rory Noonan (Evening Echo) and Finbarr McCarthy (96FM and 103FM) with team captains James O'Sullivan of Éire Óg, Cian Baldwin of Douglas; Kevin McMahon (Kilshannig) and Cathal Manning of Valley Rovers. Picture: Howard Crowdy
Chairman Rebel Óg Central Michael O'Mahony shares a light-hearted moment with media sponsors Rory Noonan (Evening Echo) and Finbarr McCarthy (96FM and 103FM) with team captains James O'Sullivan of Éire Óg, Cian Baldwin of Douglas; Kevin McMahon (Kilshannig) and Cathal Manning of Valley Rovers. Picture: Howard Crowdy

FIXTURES

Carrigaline Court Hotel Premier 1 MFC final: Douglas v Éire Óg, Carrigaline, 3.30pm.

Carrigaline Court Hotel Premier 2A MFC final: Kilshannig v Valley Rovers, Carrigaline, 1pm.