Five weeks have elapsed since Antrim succumbed to Monaghan in the Ulster Championship but anyone who believes that time can heal psychological wounds would do well to focus on Saffrons’ boss Liam Bradley.
The hurt and heartbreak he endured on that occasion are still prevalent, the frustration having clearly bitten into his very soul.
The All-Ireland qualifiers may in some quarters be hailed as a safety net of sorts but while Bradley is naturally anxious to see his side flourish against London tomorrow, he clearly feels that this is a route they could have avoided.
“We were three points up against Monaghan in the second-half and we were not able to push on,” he reflects.
“I was bitterly disappointed because that was a game that we should definitely have won.”
Instead of jostling for the provincial crown as Bradley had hoped Antrim will bid to clamber back onto the All-Ireland trail tomorrow knowing that they are taking their life in their hands against London.
“This is a banana skin for us,” admits Bradley.
“But we have to be up for it.
“There are good players in this Antrim side and it’s up to them to prove themselves. We have got to try and make up for that setback against Monaghan.”
Several players will attend today’s wedding of Tomas McCann but when the squad jets off to London early tomorrow morning they will do so with a warning from Bradley ringing in their ears.
“We have to look at this as the first step on our way back again and we want to be at our best. Nothing less will do,” he insists.
Paddy Cunningham, Michael Magill and Mark Sweeney will again have key roles in attack while Michael McCann (below) and Aodhan Gallagher can provide the impetus from midfield.
London manager Paul Goggins believes his side has the capacity to surprise Antrim in much the same way that they pulled the rug from under Fermanagh’s feet last year.
“We did not feel we deserved to lose our Connacht Championship match to Leitrim and I think there is a big performance in this London side,” insists Goggins.
Former Antrim player Sean McVeigh will captain London and Goggins believes he will be fired up for the clash.