2017 AIB Football All-Ireland Club Championship: Semi-Final Previews
February 11, 2017 (No Comments) by Dean Fitzgerald

‘Here we all are now, all the lads’, as Fr.Todd Unctious would say. It’s time for the 2017 AIB Football All-Ireland Club Championships Semi-Finals and by god it feels like a long time since the provincials were played. ‘I thought the Dublin team already won it’ I hear you say?’ Well no they didn’t, that was the Leinster, again. By the time the first ball is thrown in on Saturday February 11th, it will be 2 months since any of these teams have played a championship game. Bit ridiculous really isn’t it? But that’s a story for another day.

2017-aib-football-all-ireland-club-championship-semi-final-previews

Each of these teams have been excellent, with Galway’s Corofin, Dublin’s St. Vincent’s, Kerry’s Dr. Crokes and Derry’s Slaughtneil all well deserving of their spots. Any of these teams could be champions if they hit form at the biggest time of the club calendar.

Match Betting

Many have St. Vincent’s as favourites for the title, but Paddy Power have Corofin as slight overall favourites at 11/8, with Vincent’s close behind at 9/4, Dr. Crokes at 10/3, and Slaughtneil at 11/2. Basically, the bookies have no idea who is going to win, so it’s probably best to keep your money in your pocket and spend it on your significant other for Valentine’s Day. You’re welcome for the reminder, by the way. We’ve even got the perfect gift guide for him and her that will really get you in the good books.

St. Vincent’s – Dublin

Dublin teams just win, it’s what they do. Moral victories have become as close as Leinster teams have gotten in recent years, unfortunately.

St. Vincent’s are the team many consider favourites due to the strength of Dublin club football, the attacking football brand they play with, and the experience of tasting All-Ireland success in 2014, and with the supremely talented but often hot-headed Diarmuid Connolly in their team, they have a major chance. I mean, if those outside of the boot passes don’t get at least make you say ‘Oh God that was sexy’, you should just change over to ‘Flog it’, might be more your cup of tea.

st-vincents-dublin-diarmuid-connolly

The real test for them begins now against Slaughtneil. St.Vincent’s will be very confident of winning however, having come through a tough Dublin championship and won Leinster with little difficulty. They’re the boys most neutrals want to see lose to the underdog

Slaughtneil – Derry

What a story this club is. The demands of playing GAA nowadays means that there aren’t many top dual clubs in the country. Slaughtneil, a rural community in Derry, have not only been competitive in both codes, but have slaughtered (Heh, get it? Slaught-ered? Okay, that was terrible) the opposition in Ulster in football, hurling, and even camogie to win the provincial titles in all three codes.

slaughtneil-derry-chrissy-mckaigue

They are essentially the anti-Vincent’s. A small, rural club facing the big city club for a spot in Croke Park on St. Patrick’s day. With no players known as ‘marquee’ outside of Derry, they typify the team being bigger than any one player. The neutral is expected to throw their weight behind them on Saturday (2.00pm throw-in) when the two face in Newry.

Corofin – Galway

The bookies favourites, and for good reason. Corofin were seriously impressive in dispatching St. Brigid’s of Roscommon, winning 2-13 to 0-5. Four Galway club titles in a row shows their clear pedigree as a force in club football. With an All-Ireland win in 2015 and a quality veteran core spearheaded by Gary Sice, the Galway side must surely consider another All-Ireland final a minimum aim.

corofin-galway-gary-sice

Their play is attacking, having scored 2-30 in two Connacht championship games against St. Brigid’s and an extra time epic with Castlebar Mitchel’s. Corofin are going into their game against Dr. Crokes both underestimated and highly-rated, like that mature student in a group assignment that does most of the work but doesn’t boast about it (Thanks again Conor, you legend!).

Dr. Croke’s – Kerry

Vincent’s are the big Dublin team, Corofin are the favourites, Slaughtneil are most people’s second team, but what are Dr. Crokes? They are the team with pedigree. The proven winners over the years, which sounds oddly like THAT green and gold coloured Munster team that wins a lot.

dr-crokes-kerry-colm-cooper

5 provincial title in 10 years, an 18 point Munster final win, and an air of Kerry-like anticipation of another All-Ireland final has Dr. Crokes looking very strong for their clash with Corofin in Limerick (4.00pm throw-in). While they obviously won’t believe they’ll waltz into the final, Dr Crokes fans fully expect, and often demand, a performance that will carry them past the Galway men. Dr. Crokes will be hoping that pedigree carries them past the favourites to the final on St. Patrick’s day.

Predictions

St.Vincent’s V Slaughtneil – It’s a case of Head Vs Heart here. Head says Vincent’s, heart says Slaughtneil. Painfully, the head wins – St. Vincent’s

Corofin V Dr. Crokes – This game just seeps quality, with wonderful football to be expected. Very difficult to predict confidently, but one suspects Corofin will do just enough. Luck may play a factor in this game – Corofin

Both of these games are set to be crackers, so if you get a chance, sit down, relax, and watch football at its most pure – In the middle of bloody February! Really should do something about that. Eventually. Maybe? Who knows…

Dean Fitzgerald
Can relate any life problems back to GAA. Has an interest in sport of all kinds, including even cricket for some reason.

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2017 AIB Football All-Ireland Club Championship: Semi-Final Previews
February 11, 2017 (No Comments) by Dean Fitzgerald

‘Here we all are now, all the lads’, as Fr.Todd Unctious would say. It’s time for the 2017 AIB Football All-Ireland Club Championships Semi-Finals and by god it feels like a long time since the provincials were played. ‘I thought the Dublin team already won it’ I hear you say?’ Well no they didn’t, that was the Leinster, again. By the time the first ball is thrown in on Saturday February 11th, it will be 2 months since any of these teams have played a championship game. Bit ridiculous really isn’t it? But that’s a story for another day.

2017-aib-football-all-ireland-club-championship-semi-final-previews

Each of these teams have been excellent, with Galway’s Corofin, Dublin’s St. Vincent’s, Kerry’s Dr. Crokes and Derry’s Slaughtneil all well deserving of their spots. Any of these teams could be champions if they hit form at the biggest time of the club calendar.

Match Betting

Many have St. Vincent’s as favourites for the title, but Paddy Power have Corofin as slight overall favourites at 11/8, with Vincent’s close behind at 9/4, Dr. Crokes at 10/3, and Slaughtneil at 11/2. Basically, the bookies have no idea who is going to win, so it’s probably best to keep your money in your pocket and spend it on your significant other for Valentine’s Day. You’re welcome for the reminder, by the way. We’ve even got the perfect gift guide for him and her that will really get you in the good books.

St. Vincent’s – Dublin

Dublin teams just win, it’s what they do. Moral victories have become as close as Leinster teams have gotten in recent years, unfortunately.

St. Vincent’s are the team many consider favourites due to the strength of Dublin club football, the attacking football brand they play with, and the experience of tasting All-Ireland success in 2014, and with the supremely talented but often hot-headed Diarmuid Connolly in their team, they have a major chance. I mean, if those outside of the boot passes don’t get at least make you say ‘Oh God that was sexy’, you should just change over to ‘Flog it’, might be more your cup of tea.

st-vincents-dublin-diarmuid-connolly

The real test for them begins now against Slaughtneil. St.Vincent’s will be very confident of winning however, having come through a tough Dublin championship and won Leinster with little difficulty. They’re the boys most neutrals want to see lose to the underdog

Slaughtneil – Derry

What a story this club is. The demands of playing GAA nowadays means that there aren’t many top dual clubs in the country. Slaughtneil, a rural community in Derry, have not only been competitive in both codes, but have slaughtered (Heh, get it? Slaught-ered? Okay, that was terrible) the opposition in Ulster in football, hurling, and even camogie to win the provincial titles in all three codes.

slaughtneil-derry-chrissy-mckaigue

They are essentially the anti-Vincent’s. A small, rural club facing the big city club for a spot in Croke Park on St. Patrick’s day. With no players known as ‘marquee’ outside of Derry, they typify the team being bigger than any one player. The neutral is expected to throw their weight behind them on Saturday (2.00pm throw-in) when the two face in Newry.

Corofin – Galway

The bookies favourites, and for good reason. Corofin were seriously impressive in dispatching St. Brigid’s of Roscommon, winning 2-13 to 0-5. Four Galway club titles in a row shows their clear pedigree as a force in club football. With an All-Ireland win in 2015 and a quality veteran core spearheaded by Gary Sice, the Galway side must surely consider another All-Ireland final a minimum aim.

corofin-galway-gary-sice

Their play is attacking, having scored 2-30 in two Connacht championship games against St. Brigid’s and an extra time epic with Castlebar Mitchel’s. Corofin are going into their game against Dr. Crokes both underestimated and highly-rated, like that mature student in a group assignment that does most of the work but doesn’t boast about it (Thanks again Conor, you legend!).

Dr. Croke’s – Kerry

Vincent’s are the big Dublin team, Corofin are the favourites, Slaughtneil are most people’s second team, but what are Dr. Crokes? They are the team with pedigree. The proven winners over the years, which sounds oddly like THAT green and gold coloured Munster team that wins a lot.

dr-crokes-kerry-colm-cooper

5 provincial title in 10 years, an 18 point Munster final win, and an air of Kerry-like anticipation of another All-Ireland final has Dr. Crokes looking very strong for their clash with Corofin in Limerick (4.00pm throw-in). While they obviously won’t believe they’ll waltz into the final, Dr Crokes fans fully expect, and often demand, a performance that will carry them past the Galway men. Dr. Crokes will be hoping that pedigree carries them past the favourites to the final on St. Patrick’s day.

Predictions

St.Vincent’s V Slaughtneil – It’s a case of Head Vs Heart here. Head says Vincent’s, heart says Slaughtneil. Painfully, the head wins – St. Vincent’s

Corofin V Dr. Crokes – This game just seeps quality, with wonderful football to be expected. Very difficult to predict confidently, but one suspects Corofin will do just enough. Luck may play a factor in this game – Corofin

Both of these games are set to be crackers, so if you get a chance, sit down, relax, and watch football at its most pure – In the middle of bloody February! Really should do something about that. Eventually. Maybe? Who knows…

Dean Fitzgerald
Can relate any life problems back to GAA. Has an interest in sport of all kinds, including even cricket for some reason.

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