Historic Double-Header takes centre stage as Kildare Senior Footballers look to maintain League safety

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Historic Double-Header takes centre stage as Kildare Senior Footballers look to maintain League safety
By Robert Cribbin 8:30 Saturday 16th of March 2019

This  afternoon is a big one for everyone involved in Kildare GAA as St.Conleths Park plays host to both the Men and Ladies Senior Footballers in a League Double-Header for the first time ever.

The highly progressive move between the GAA and LGFA in Kildare is hugely positive news for the growth of Ladies Football in the county and it increases the number of double headers that have taken place across the country this year.

The Kildare Senior Footballers will take on Tipperary in round 6 of the Allianz Football League at 2.30pm where a win will see them fight off the threat of relegation ahead of a final round game against Donegal a week later.

It’s a crucial game for Cian O’Neill’s side and after only winning two games thus far they will be eager to improve on that statistic come 4.30 this evening.

The Meath defeat two weeks ago means promotion is no longer in Kildare’s hands and they are relying on favours from teams playing both the Royals and Fermanagh in that regard but first things first a win over Tipperary will all but seal safety in Division 2 and while that’s far from the main goal of the team its vital for the development of a young squad.

There has been a lot of negativity around the County after the Meath game but they only lost out to a stoppage time penalty at the end of the day so hopes of getting back on track at home will be quite high.

The injury situation is far from positive though with the likes of Ben McCormack, Cian O’Donoghue, Eoin Doyle and Mark Donnellan all going down injured the last day.

Fortunately both O’Donoghue and Donnellan are expected to be fit but its less good news on McCormack who reaggravated a finger injury that will rule him out of the rest of the League.

He is due to go under the knife this week and will be therefore in a race against time to be fit for the Leinster Championship opener against Wicklow on Saturday 11th of May.

Captain Eoin Doyle is another worry who injured himself before the Meath game in training and he played with heavy strapping on his knee but he didn’t see out the full game and is treated as a doubt for today's game.

In more positive news Chris Healy will be in the selection mix while Kevin Flynn is nearing a comeback aswell.

Tipperary will come to Newbridge in desperation mode as only a win will keep them up and they have key players Evan Comerford and Michael Quinlivan back as they go in search of an away victory.

Kildare know that a win will relegate Tipp and give them hope of going to Donegal with a top two place still on offer but anything other than that and the outside voices will become louder by the minute.

The curtain-raiser to this game will see the Kildare Senior Ladies take on Meath in round 5 of the Lidl National Football League at 12 noon as they hope to get their Division 3 League campaign back on track after recent losses to Roscommon and Wicklow.

In similar fashion to the Men, the Ladies team have lost two games in their campaign thus far and they will look to get back on track.

They are in quite an unfortunate position on the League table at present as their last home game against Offaly was abandoned and they would have fancied themselves to win that.

It all looked rosy after a Neasa Dooley injury time goal gave Daniel Moynihan’s team victory over Longford in round 1 but the subsequent losses to Roscommon and Wicklow has certainly piled the pressure on.

The Offaly abandonment increases the importance of the Meath game as a loss would have them looking down the table but a win and they are very much still in the semi-final hunt.

It’s a new look side with a number of last year’s minor team involved and consistency is bound to be an issue but they will be hopeful of getting their first home win in front of a big crowd

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