Killererin and Corofin clash in county senior football final on Sunday

History will be made next Sunday in Pearse Stadium at 4pm when Killererin and Corofin come face to face in a county senior final for the first time.

History will be made next Sunday in Pearse stadium at 4pm when Killererin and Corofin come face to face in a county senior final for the first time.

Both clubs have been very much to the fore in Galway senior football in the last 15 years, with Corofin winning eight county senior titles since 1995, and Killererin collecting three in that time frame.

Both sides have a host of household names who have worn the county jersey with distinction and there are some intriguing battles on the cards with Padraic Joyce, Kieran Fitzgerald, Damien Burke, Nicky Joyce, Gary Sice, Tommie Joyce and Alan Burke all likely to cross paths at different stages.

Killererin injury free

Both camps are looking forward to the game and Killererin’s player-manager Tommie Joyce is delighted to have a clean bill of health going into the eagerly awaited contest.

“Thankfully we are injury free, which is terrific and we are really looking forward to the game.

“Corofin are extremely difficult to beat and the further they go in the championship, the harder that becomes. The fact that they have won eight county titles since 1995 and have not lost a county senior final since 1994 [against Tuam Stars], proves they are one of the best teams in the country.

“That said, we are really looking forward to the challenge and we believe we have a great chance of producing a performance to win the game. We learnt a lot in our two games with Mountbellew/Moylough in the semi-finals and we hope that those games will have brought us on.”

Joyce said there was very little between the two sides in the championship last year - Corofin won 0-11 to 0-8 in the quarter-final - and he did not expect there to be much in it at the final whistle on Sunday.

“The team that produces on the day will win. We believe we have a great opportunity of doing the business on Sunday and it is all to play for.”

Corofin have one major injury concern over regular centre-back Tony Goggins with a hamstring injury, but they can welcome back team captain Gary Sice, while the break since their narrow win over Barna in the semi-final will have brought on the fitness of Damien Burke, Joe Canney and Cathal Silke.

Corofin team manager Gerry Keane knows they are in for a huge battle on Sunday and he is well aware of the danger that the Killererin attack poses.

“They have some fantastic players and we know and respect that. We will have to be at our very best to try to stop them.

“ Both sides are very experienced and most of the Killererin panel won county medals in 2004 and 2007, so they know what to expect in a county final and they will be well prepared. Our panel has worked hard over the past few weeks and hopefully they can go out on Sunday and produce a game winning performance.”

It is a difficult game to call and there is unlikely to be much between them at the final whistle. Both teams can play a very defensive game with many players behind the ball, and that does not augur well for a free-scoring bonanza.

Corofin are going for a three-in-a-row which has never been done in the club’s history at this level and they will be keen to achieve that objective.

For that to happen they must cut off the supply lines to Padraic and Nicky Joyce with Tommie Joyce a crucial player in getting the leather up to that dangerous duo.

For Corofin to advance they will need big displays around the middle from the likes of Greg Higgins and Kieran Comer, with a probable role for Aiden Donnellan too at some stage. Their battle with big Tom Hughes and perhaps Jonathan Keane could be a game breaker.

Assuming that the Corofin defence can restrict Padraic and cousin Nicky to seven or eight points between them, including frees, they will be on the road to success. With good disciplined tackling, that low target can be achieved.

I don’t expect more than a two or three point swing either way, but I give the vote for Corofin to be on the right side of it.

Verdict: Corofin

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