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Poacher & Varley #21 : Mouthwatering QF draws | Down blitz Laois | What now for Galway

GAA coach Steven Poacher and former Mayo star Enda Varley get stuck into the week’s big Gaelic football talking points

GAA coach Steven Poacher and former Mayo star Enda Varley get stuck into the week’s big Gaelic football talking points.

DOUBLE QUARTER-FINAL SPECTACULARS IN CROKE PARK
It’s quarter-final weekend in the All-Ireland Senior Football Championships with
fascinating double-headers in Croke Park this Saturday and Sunday.

Ulster have four representatives (Armagh, Derry, Monaghan, Tyrone); Munster have two (Cork, Kerry) while Connacht (Mayo) and Leinster (Dublin) have one each. Five of the teams (Armagh, Kerry, Mayo, Monaghan, Tyrone) were in Division 1 this year while three (Cork, Derry, Dublin) were in Division 2.

Saturday’s programme features an appetising clash (3.45pm) between Kerry, the defending All-Ireland champions, and Tyrone, the 2021 winners. It’s followed at 6.00pm by Armagh, who are bidding to reach the semi-finals for the first time since 2005, and Monaghan who were last there in 2018.

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Cork (bidding to reach the semi-final for the first time since 2012), and Derry (who
reached last year’s semi-final) start Sunday’s programme (1.45pm). It will be followed at 4.00pm by Dublin (bidding to reach the semi-final for a 14th successive year) and Mayo (last in the semi-final two years ago).

KERRY v TYRONE
They meet in the championship for the ninth time, having first clashed in the 1986 All-Ireland final.

Their most recent championship meeting was in the 2021 All-Ireland semi-final when Tyrone won by a point in extra-time before going on to win the All-Ireland final.

ARMAGH v MONAGHAN
They last met in the championship two years ago when a high-scoring Ulster semi-final ended in a win for Monaghan (4-17 to 2-21).

CORK v DERRY
They meet in the championship for only the second time, having previously clashed in the 1993 All-Ireland final, which Derry won by 1-14 to 2-8 to take the title for the first and — so far — only time.

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The last competitive clash between the counties was in Division 2 this year when they drew 1-14 each in Round 7. Derry beat Cork by nine points in the 2022 Allianz League.

DUBLIN v MAYO
It has been a very busy championship rivalry over the last eleven years, with no fewer than ten games.

Dublin won six to Mayo’s two while two were drawn.

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