Home Sport GAA Here’s your guide to the Laois minor footballers Leinster championship semi final...

Here’s your guide to the Laois minor footballers Leinster championship semi final against Meath

The Laois minor footballers will be looking to reach the Leinster final for the second time in the last three years when they face Meath this afternoon.

At 12pm today, they will go head to head against their opponents in O’Moore Park in the semi finals of the Leinster championship.

Donncha Phelan’s side were in a group with Kildare, Wexford, Carlow and Longford.

This was Group 1 of the newly revamped Leinster minor championship and Laois had to finish in the top two spots to make the semi final.

Wins over Longford and Wexford, along with a draw against Carlow, had them in a good place but a crushing defeat to Kildare left them in limbo.

They sat second in the group but had played all of their games while Longford, who were back in third and could still catch Laois, needed to defeat Kildare in their final game.

That took place on Tuesday and although the sides were level as we entered the final quarter, Kildare pulled away to win and this meant Laois finished second.

Anyway, we will now take a look at the match ahead:

Starting Teams

The Laois team named ahead of today’s game is:

LAOIS: Oisin Keogh (Emo); Seán Greene (Emo), Mikey Bennett (Portarlington), Seán O’Neill (The Rock); Niall Carey (Portlaoise), Cathal Bennett (Portarlington), Ciaran Byrne (Ballyroan-Abbey); Seán Michael Corcoran (Portarlington), Ben Conroy (Portlaoise); Rioghan Murphy (Portarlington), Conor Goode (Stradbally), Daragh Galvin (Portarlington); Ross Bolger (Killeshin), Oisin Byrne (Arles-Killeen), Mark O’Connell (Timahoe)

Meath: Sean Brennan; James O’Hare, Harry O’Higgins, Cathal Hickey; Conor Farrelly, Conor Harford, Sean Coffey; Adam Reilly, Cian McBride; Darragh Swaine, Matthew Costello, Bryan McCormack; David Bell, Luke Kelly, Luke Mitchell.

What Meath players should we watch out for?

Meath were in the six team group and won their first four games against Offaly, Louth, Dublin and Westmeath to qualify with one game to spare.

They lost to Wicklow in their final game – a result which saw pre-competition favourites Dublin eliminated.

Luke Mitchell at full forward has been their main attacking threat and he scored six points in the win over Dublin.

What’s Meath’s season been like so far? 

Perfect really. They won their first four games against Offaly, Louth, Dublin and Westmeath to qualify with one game to spare.

They lost that final game to Wicklow but put out a weakened team so that lads would be fresh for this tie.

Will be firm favourites to make the final.

What’s the history between the sides?

The most recent meeting between Laois and Meathwas last year in Round 1 of the Leinster qualifiers.

Laois had lost to Louth while Meath had been defeated by Dublin in Round 1 proper meaning both teams needed victory or they would be eliminated.

Laois trailed 0-6 to 0-4 at half time and despite playing with the wind in the second half, Laois fell five points down and looked to be on their way out of the championship.

But a Ciaran Comerford point kick-started their revival and they hit the last six points of the game to record a thrilling win – the last of them coming via Diarmuid Whelan.

SCORERS – Laois: Diarmuid Whelan 0-4 (one free), Niall Dunne (two ’45s), Alan Kinsella (one free) 0-2 each, Mark Barry (free), Ronan Coffey and Ciaran Comerford 0-1 each. Meath: Shane Walsh 0-4 (three frees), Saran Ó Fionnagain 0-2, Conall Aherne 0-2, Jordan Morris 0-1, Sean Martin 0-1.  

LAOIS: Thomas McCann (Ballyroan Abbey); Michael Dowling (Portlaoise), Sean O’Flynn (Courtwood), Daniel Comerford (The Harps); Colin Slevin (Portarlington), Seamus Lacey (Ballylinan), Gary Saunders (Portlaoise); Robert Tyrell (Camross), Diarmuid Whelan (Ballyroan Abbey); Alan Kinsella (Courtwood), Niall Dunne (Courtwood), Ronan Coffey (Portarlington); Mark Barry (O’Dempsey’s), Ciaran Comerford (The Harps); Dean Brophy (St Joseph’s). Subs: PJ Daly (The Heath) for Brophy, Jack Owens (Emo) for Whelan (injured), Whelan for Barry, Damien McCaul (Annanough) for C Comerford

MEATH: Andrew Beakey; Sean Ryan, Dan Devine, Robbie Clarke ; Adam Murphy, John Keane, Jack Hetherington; Cian Swaine, Liam Byrne; Paddy Conway, Sean Martin, Conall Aherne; Jordan Morris, Shane Walsh, Conor Frayne. Subs: Saran Ó Fionnagain, Sean Bannon, Pauric Nulty

What are the odds? 

There doesn’t seem to be any odds available from any of the bookmakers for this game.

When, where and how much?

7.30pm on Wednesday, June 27 in St Conleth’s Park, Newbridge
Adults: €10
Juveniles (U-16): Free
Students/Senior Citizens:- €5 with appropriate I.D.

SEE ALSO – Meet the Portarlington woman with five grandchildren representing Laois

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Stradbally native Alan Hartnett is a graduate of Knockbeg College who has worked in the local and national media since 2008. Alan has a BA in Economics, Politics and Law and an MA in Journalism from DCU. His happiest moment was when Jody Dillon scored THAT goal in the Laois senior football final in 2016.