Go back a few months and you may have encountered serious obstacles ahead of the qualifier round on Cork, like the disillusionment surrounding the Rebels senior football team, but a couple of weeks rolled in and everyone looked pink in the garden. The side was often forgotten by loyal supporters of the Cork GAA.
Unde, for a second weekend on the boom, Cork managed to oust championship rivals to remain in the 2022 All Ireland Series and in doing so book his spot in the last eight for Sam Maguire’s race.
Cork improved in Limerick at home on Sunday afternoon and continued a good factor growing at Leaside – the boys in red have already gone further this year than their opening season results.
Last weekend Cork welcomed Limerick to Pair You Chaoim for a game that the men in red were overly eager to win.
The LeSiders came into the game last weekend on the back of a dogged victory over a Louth side that failed to show much that day but credited the home side for the win – their first championship win of the season.
The game with Limerick was far from the perfect performance Cork fans would have been dreaming of – in fact the home side was only in the lead by a point at the break and could really feel blessed to have the lead at all, such closeness. There was a tie and equality of quality between the sides.
The players behind Sean Potter’s quality, Kevin O’Donovan and Matty Taylor defended well and advanced at every available opportunity.
The trio continued throughout and were joined in the attacking areas of the field by both Brian Hurley and Stephen Sherlock – speed and power became a corner stone regarding the current crop of Cork players.
O’Donovan was top quality in all games as was Powter who continues to improve game after game. Mallow’s Taylor impressed again and Cork remains one of the mainstays of the defensive set’s improvement.
In the middle, Ian Maguire delivers one of his better performances of the season, while Eoghan McSweeney is fast becoming the man at number 11 – another scintillating performance from center.
Along with Hurley and Sherlock, Cathal O’Mahony did well – scoring a vital goal when Cork needed it.
Cork looked good going forward, especially in the second half, and should have been good enough at the back to keep Limerick at bay, although the treaty men still caused Cork too many problems for a side. Those who want to go deeper in 2022. Championship.
Limerick has improved the game in game and shown everything they need to notice that they are becoming a real football county – perhaps not yet challenging for their county’s hurling side but still a force to be reckoned with. Along – especially in Münster.
Limerick showed they have a fighting spirit, an eye for targets and the confidence to take their chances when they come and the green men will now need to move again in 2023 – at least But for now it’s back in club action for Limerick football and its players – to return to the provincial finals.
For Cork, its forward and upward opposition is becoming more important than here for the boys in red.
The reward for all of Cork’s improvements and efforts under interim manager John Cleary – the small matter of a trip to Croke Park for the All-Ireland Senior Football quarter-final against the mighty Dubs – is the county that has dominated football for the past decade.
Dublin will go into the tie as favourites, red hot favorites at that – having secured yet another provincial title and the result is far from a foregone conclusion, with their cash too loose to splurge on a cork win. Should – that said, Cork has shown in recent weeks that they have some really good players, they have tactics that can hold against other sides in the middle of the pack and they have a growing sense of confidence that will keep them at that level. would carry over from what they were playing. in the first year.
With just over a week to go to clash with the Dubs at HQ, the Rebels will be eager to play down all the positives associated with the setup and look to take the pressure off a host of young players who will never face one. Would not have played. The crowd is whatever they will see in the Saturday week.
A big day for Dublin football. A huge day for Cork football.