Hospital Pass: Kerry eye up Kilkenny and where Andy Moran wants to play the All-Ireland final
The only blot on Kerry’s CV, managerial moves aplenty and Andy Moran’s dream All-Ireland final venue.
And then there was one…
The first ever Championship meeting of Kerry and Donegal this weekend means that the Kingdom will be as close as they may ever get to having the full set.
After this weekend’s tussle in Croke Park with the Ulster champs, Kerry will have faced 30 other counties in the Championship. Anyone want to hazard a guess at the missing county?
Yes, of course, it’s Kilkenny. The Cats haven’t competed in the Leinster Football championship since 1982 so while the back-door era has allowed Kerry to hoover up almost all their missing opponents at one stage or another, Kilkenny have remained elusive.
Will it change down the line? Who knows, but up to this weekend asking someone to name the two teams Kerry had never played was a great quiz question. With only one left, the question just got a little too easy.
The summer may be over for all but eight teams in the football but there are a raft of managerial jobs available on the inter-county scene and county boards are not sitting around to fill them either.
First out of the blocks are Westmeath who have said they will appoint a new man in the next fortnight.
Pat Flanagan is still in the bib and would like to continue but former Westmeath boss Luke Dempsey is rumoured to want back in after his stint with Carlow finished.
Another county with an empty bench is Louth and Colin Kelly, the county’s Under 21 supremo, is in the frame.
It sounds like both jobs will be filled by mid August. It’s all a long way from the days of appointments well into the dark days of winter.
Andy Moran’s dream All-Ireland final venue
It would be very easy now for us to make loads of jokes about Mayo and choking in Croke Park but unlike Joe Brolly, we won’t say things just for the sake of it. Mayo have won massive matches in Croke Park in recent years and while Sam still eludes them, that’s not the fault of HQ.
Anyway, on the GAA.ie site this week Andy Moran was asked if he could play an All-Ireland final anywhere other than Croker, where would it be.
“I would have to say Anfield,” said Andy. “Since the days of John Barnes I have been supporting Liverpool so I would have to stick with my colours. I was over there last year. Going in to the stadium it didn’t look great but when you are in there it’s a fine place. It’s more about the atmosphere than anything else really.”
We’ve had the Polo Grounds already, maybe it is the time the Kop saw some real football.
While you're here...
Listen to Leinster's Mike Ross and ex-Ireland and Munster man Donncha O'Callaghan previewing Ireland's game with France in the Six Nations on SportsJOE's new rugby podcast, The Hard Yards.
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