Antrim football manager Lenny Harbinson believes the “exceptionally high standard” of the county’s club championship can prove a huge spur in helping to steer his team to promotion in the Allianz League.
With Erin’s Own, Cargin and Kickhams Creggan due to meet in Sunday’s decider at Portglenone, Harbinson is convinced that the curtain will be brought down in style on the competition and a further insight into a potential raft of fresh talent will be provided.
“I said at the start of this year that the league would be our championship and I still hold to that view,” insists Harbinson.
“Obviously we will be focused on our Ulster Championship tie with the winners of the Monaghan v Cavan preliminary round tie, but getting promotion is our priority.”
With Michael McCann and Martin Kane having had the red cards they incurred in the semi-final win over Lamh Dhearg rescinded, Cargin will be at full-strength in what Harbinson thinks will be a gripping final.
“There will be a number of county squad members on view, and I will be observing other players as well,” he adds. “I think that quality displayed during the club championship will prove a big spur for the county team.
“The matches for the most part have been of an exceptionally high standard and I am particularly pleased about this.”
Meanwhile, venues and times have been finalised for the Ulster senior football championship schedule.
Saturday, October 31
Qualifying Round: Monaghan v Cavan (St Tiernach’s Park, Clones, 1.15pm);
Sunday, November 1
Quarter-Finals: Donegal v Tyrone (MacCumhaill Park, Ballybofey, 1.30pm), Derry v Armagh (Celtic Park, Derry, 4pm);
Saturday, November 7
Quarter-Final: Antrim v Monaghan/Cavan (Corrigan Park, subject to safety certificate, or Kingspan Breffni Park, Cavan 1.15pm);
Sunday, November 8
Quarter-Final: Fermanagh v Down (Brewster Park, Enniskillen 1.30);
Saturday, November 14
Semi-Final: Donegal/Tyrone v Derry/Armagh (Venue TBC, 1.15pm);
Sunday, November 15
Semi Final: Fermanagh/ Down v Antrim/Monaghan/Cavan (Venue TBC, 1.30pm);
Sunday, November 22: Final (4pm).