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Calling the shots

By Declan Bogue

ULSTER SENIOR FOOTBALL CHAMPIONSHIP

DONEGAL v CAVAN

(Sunday, Ballybofey, 4.00pm)

Without their captain Dara McVeety, there is little surprise that few are giving Cavan much of a hope here.

Their Championship form in the last decade would back that up. The last time Cavan beat a Division One side in the Championship was 2005, which coincidentally happened to be Donegal, who were relegated that season, as they were this.

Donegal are just too well-equipped to lose this one and their enviable home record.

VERDICT: Donegal

ULSTER MINOR FOOTBALL CHAMPIONSHIP

FERMANAGH v CAVAN

(Sunday, Brewster Park, 6.00pm)

Two sides who have met in a sense recently, with St Pat’s Cavan beating St Michael’s Enniskillen in the Rannafast Cup final.

VERDICT: Cavan

ULSTER MINOR FOOTBALL CHAMPIONSHIP

DOWN v TYRONE

(Saturday, Newry, 6.00pm)

Tyrone appear to be the side to watch in this Championship. But Down, managed by James McCartan, posted a good extra-time win over Armagh in the last round.

VERDICT: Tyrone

ULSTER MINOR FOOTBALL CHAMPIONSHIP

DONEGAL v MONAGHAN

(Sunday, Ballybofey, 2.00pm)

A chastening defeat to Tyrone, which has manager Gerry Duffy questioning Donegal’s fitness levels, might be an indicator of wider problems.

VERDICT: Monaghan

ULSTER MINOR FOOTBALL CHAMPIONSHIP

ARMAGH v DERRY

(Saturday, Athletic Grounds, 6.00pm)

The Derry side are a little patched up after extra-time games against Monaghan and Armagh, but should have enough for this one.

VERDICT: Derry

JOE McDONAGH CUP

ANTRIM v CARLOW

(Saturday, Corrigan Park, 3.00pm)

A strong Antrim team named for this one after their thumping win last weekend over Meath.

If they can tighten up at the back, they should take this crunch fixture.

VERDICT: Antrim

CHRISTY RING CUP

DOWN v ARMAGH

(Saturday, Ballycran, 3.00pm)

Managerial difficulties will trouble Armagh, with Padraig O’Connor having little time to prepare his side.

VERDICT: Down

CHRISTY RING CUP

DERRY v LONDON

(Saturday, Ballinascreen, 1.00pm)

Finishing bottom of Division 2B was no preparation for Derry, although they have Chrissy McKaigue and Brendan Rogers back for this, along with their Slaughtneil club mates.

London spent the year a level above and this should count.

VERDICT: London

NICKY RACKARD CUP

TYRONE v DONEGAL

(Saturday, Killyclogher, 3.00pm)

Donegal’s experience of playing a league above in 2B should count in this one.

VERDICT: Donegal

NICKY RACKARD CUP

MONAGHAN v LONGFORD

(Saturday, Inniskeen, 3.00pm)

Two teams that finished bottom of Division 3A, but Monaghan won the head-to-head.

VERDICT: Monaghan

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