JOE marks your calendar for the sporting week ahead
While the provincial finals might be already decided, there's still plenty of GAA and lots of other sport to keep you amused this week…
The Tour de France was decided, the British Open was won and the lads from the Farney county pulled off a surprising victory against All-Ireland champions Donegal in Ulster in what was a weekend packed with sporting action. We barely left the couch, despite the lovely weather.
Still, while that might have taken you to the sporting brim, there's still plenty to come this week, so get the calendar out and start marking the dates you need to keep free.
The CONCACAF Gold Cup is on this week, and while there are plenty of minnows knocking around, the big two are still in it as USA ('MURICA!) and Mexico have managed to avoid each other in the semi-finals and will more than likely progress to a huge (and hostile) game against one another on Sunday. However, Honduras and Panama stand in their way respectively on Thursday night/Friday morning, and we imagine that they won't roll over either, especially considering that up until the Gold Cup run the USA manager Jurgen Klinsmann had been under a bit of pressure.
Speaking of pressure, Atletico Mineiro and Ronaldinho will be feeling the pressure on Wednesday night as they look to claw back a 2-0 deficit, having lost the first leg of the Copa Libertadores final. The man with magic in his boots will need to be on top form to lead by example and inspire his team to overcome a hugely committed and very resilient Olimpia. This is one for the night owls though, as it starts at 2am.
A bevvy of preseason friendlies are also upon us, the pick of the games being Manchester United taking on Yokohama F Marinos tomorrow at 11.15 am, and Liverpool facing the Melbourne Victory on Wednesday at 11am, so you can keep an eye on how your teams are shaping up for the new season.
There's some home-based action too, as Derry City have the second leg of their Europa League qualifier against Trabzonspor to come this week on Thursday, and with two away goals to their name the tie is certainly not over by any means, despite a 4-2 loss in Turkey. Sligo Rovers take on Molde in their Champions league qualifier on Tuesday night, only one goal behind from the home leg, with kick off at 6pm.
In GAA, the round four Qualifiers take place this weekend, featuring a rare triple-header in Croke Park, so you'll need to reserve all day Saturday. Cavan take on London, who were easily dispatched by Mayo on the weekend, Cork face Galway, and Tyrone clash with Meath. Donegal also take on Laois in Pairc Sean Mac Diarmada in Carrick-on-Shannon for the other match in this round.
In the hurling, Kilkenny take on Cork, which promises to be a fantastic match in the All-Ireland quarter finals on Sunday, while Galway take on Clare in the other tie in the quarters.
If you're more interested in the arrows, then there's some tantalising tungsten action from the World Matchplay in Blackpool this week too, starting this evening. There's only one word for it: world class darts.
If you want to catch up with all the news even faster, you’ll want a serious broadband connection with speeds of up to 70mb, so check out the good lads at Magnet, who will be filling your fatpipe so that you never have to worry about being connected.