There is a top class weekend in store for amateur football fans around Ireland. The JSP have looked through the fixture list and picked out the games we think are not to be missed this weekend.
FAI Junior Cup: Donnycarney FC Vs Rivervalley Rangers – Parnells Astro – Friday – 7.30pm
With Valentines day just around the corner there is a sense of romance in the air but Donnycarney will be hoping that it doesn’t extend into the FAI Junior Cup when they face giant killers Rivervalley Rangers on Friday night.
The away side have been on the mother of all cup runs this year, beating top class Dublin and Limerick opposition along the way to the last 16. The AUL Senior Sunday (4th tier) side are a team in form, littered with Premier A standard players and well capable of beating teams who are divisionally superior. In fact, so capable are they of a giant killing that the bookies have them down as favourites for this time.
Donnycarney however will be no pushovers for Rivervally and on their home turf will be more than capable of holding their own. There will be a lot of pressure on them to deliver against a team three divisions below them and if they play to their strengths they can be the ones in the quarter final draw. Expect a cup cracker here !!
LSL Senior Sunday: Drumcondra FC Vs Crumlin Utd – Pearse Park – Friday – 7.30pm
Drumcondra have surprised a lot of people with their form since they came up from Senior 1 A as champions last year. Their staying power has been admirable and the fact that they currently lay second in the Senior Sunday table is no fluke. Gary Howlet’s side are extremely difficult to beat and on their day can beat any side in this division. On Friday night they come up against a Crumlin side desperately in need of wins to get them moving up the table.
Crumlin’s league form this season has been a shock to all. The current champions struggled early on but have won their past three league games in a row. They have also added to their squad over the transfer window so this game should give us a better idea of just where Crumlin are at at the moment.
LSL Senior Sunday – Malahide Utd Vs Tolka Rovers – Gannon Park Friday – 7.45pm
Home side Malahide have been on a good run in the league of late and have gone seven games unbeaten after a patchy start. They currently sit fifth in the table and will be looking to continue racking up points on the board. The number of players they lost during the transfer window will not help when they face title challengers Tolka Rovers on Friday.
Tolka go into this game knowing it is a must win. They are already behind Bluebell on points and a further slip up would be hugely detrimental to their title chances this season. With the talent that they have in their side Tolka will be expected to win but on a cold and windy night out at Gannon Park, anything can happen.
FAI Junior Cup: St Michaels AFC Vs Evergreen FC – Cooke Park – Sunday – 2.00pm
Reigning title holders St Michaels are looking to become one of a select few clubs who have managed to defend their FAI Junior Cup crown, but Kilkenny giants Evergreen will be seeking to derail their hopes on Sunday at Cooke Park.
Speak to anyone in and around the St Michaels camp and they will admit that they have not been at their best in recent weeks. Indeed the defending champions have not had it all their own way in the previous rounds of this year’s competition either.
Evergreen are coming of the back of a big five goal Leinster Junior Cup victory and will have no fear in putting it up to the Tipperary Town based side. Their league form has been disappointing so far this season but the cups have given them a renewed lease of life.
St Michaels will be the favourites but in a cup game anything can happen.
FAI Junior Cup -North End United v Listowel Celtic – Belvedere Road, Wexford – Sunday – 2.00pm
North End United go into this game as favourites after disposing of Limerick giants Pike Rovers in the last round. The Wexford side will be looking to make it to the last eight for the fourth time in their clubs history. They are a side that has a lot of talent including Paul Murphy and former League of Ireland star Gary Dempsey. Their league form is good and they are unbeaten after eight league games.
Listowel Celtic are also a team in form and are currently fifth in their league having only lost once all season. It the past two rounds they have beaten Limerick Premier Division side Knockainey before going on to register a victory against top side Crettyard Utd. Their cup form shows they are move than capable and they will provide a big test for the home side.
This one has all the makings of another cup classic. Not to be missed.