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Tag Archives: National Football League

Footballers finish league with emphatic win

Clare 3-12 Louth 1-11 FOLLOWING their seven point win over Louth in Cusack Park on Sunday, Clare guaranteed themselves division 2 status in the 2019 national football league. In what was their first home win of the campaign, Clare were never seriously troubled by Louth who have been relegated to division three. Clare finished on eight points in the table, three more than their 2017 total. The key results in this years campaign were away to Down and Cork, while they drew at home to Cavan and Tipperary. Goals at the start and end of the opening half were pivotal in helping Clare to a relatively comfortable win. Jamie Malone goaled after just 11 seconds, having been put through by a Gary Brennan free. The free was won by Cathal O’Connnor who was fouled immediately after the throw in. Just before the interval whistle, Clare wing forward, Kieran Malone slotted home his first goal of the campaign, which helped the …

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Clare footballers need a new strategy to beat Cork

CLARE’S Division 2 future is entirely in their own hands. If they can somehow pull out a Newry-like performance in Pairc Uí Rínn on Saturday from 7pm, they have every chance of getting a result, beating Louth at home in their final league game on March 25 and assuring themselves of a place in the same division next year. While Jamie Malone will be available again, following his two-game suspension, Clare will have to plan without Ciaran Russell, who was red-carded against Roscommon. Gordon Kelly is still suspended, leaving Clare scarce, particularly defensively. If Clare lose, which is likely given that Cork will be buoyant following Sunday’s win over Meath, their Division 2 status will rest on beating Louth and hoping that they don’t end up in a three-way tie. Clare have a score difference of -19, which is significantly worse than Meath and Down. If Clare finish level on points with Down, they will stay up, given that they …

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Clare to appeal proposed football bans

Suspensions have been proposed for two Clare footballers and team manager Colm Collins arising from the referee Jerome Henry’s report on Sunday’s national league game between Clare and Tipperary at Cusack Park. Clare will appeal the red card shown to Jamie Malone following his clash with Tipperary official Shane Stapleton, 11 minutes into the second half. While Stapleton was quickly back on his feet, he collapsed moments later and having received medical attention on the sideline, he was stretchered from the pitch and later removed to hospital, where he remained overnight. After the game, Tipperary manager Liam Kearns said Stapleton had hit his head off concrete when he fell. He stated he felt unwell and subsequently collapsed. Malone, who was attempting to retrieve the ball, which had gone over the sideline adjacant to where the Tipperary officials were positioned, was shown a straight red card. It is believed he was subsequently reported for a category four offence, which deals with …

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Clare footballers need a morale boost

A 14-point defeat leaves little room for putting much of a spin on things. Clare were beaten in almost every sector on Sunday. From a management point of view, Colm Collins’ task is to try to pick up the players’ morale before Sunday’s game against Tipperary in Cusack Park at 2pm. As poor as Clare were in Navan, if they manage to somehow beat Tipperary, they will move ahead of them on the Division 2 table. For that to happen though, a mammoth improvement and lifting of effort levels is required. “We win together and we lose together. No player goes out to play poorly. This week we’ll have a look at it and go after the areas we feel we didn’t do well in. These things happen. Sometimes you turn in a really magical display and sometimes it’s poor. You’re never really as bad or as good as either. You just have to park it. There’s nothing we can …

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Footballers seeking second league win over Meath

IT IS not too often that a defeated team emerges from any game with their confidence levels enhanced. While a loss is a loss, Clare did play some exceptional football in Newbridge last Sunday. Eoin Cleary gave an exhibition of shooting from play and while he did miss a chance to equalise from a free, he was one of Clare’s standout performers. More impressive than any of their scores was the off-the-shoulder support from players like Cleary, Jamie Malone, Cian O’Dea and Dean Ryan. On several occasions, during the second half in particular, players timed their support run perfectly, so that they broke Kildare tackles without breaking their own stride. Suddenly, they were in space and had time to look up and send decent ball into the inside forwards. The best way to kick quality ball is to use support play to create an opportunity. Kick the ball too early and, have no doubt, it will come back to you …

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Clare footballers aim for 70-minute effort

THE absence of captain Gary Brennan and half-forward Seán Collins has hampered Clare’s panel depth, as they aim for a first league win over Galway since 1995. Both were substituted against Down on February 12, carrying hamstring injuries and neither have recovered, while Brennan is also focusing on preparing for Ballyea’s All-Ireland club final against either Cuala or Slaughtneil. The Clare Champion understands that Ballyea panellists Pearse Lillis, David Egan and Shane Brennan will be available to the footballers this Sunday. “Gary or Seán haven’t trained since we played Down. Both of them came off injured, so I wouldn’t expect to see either of them this week, or maybe not for the Cork game either. Cathal and Kevin Harnett were the two lads with injury concerns going into the Down game. Both of them have got another few weeks under their belts and they are grand,” Clare selector David O’Brien confirmed. Galway are also on three points, having drawn with …

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Carron to host ladies football game

Carron will host the Clare lady footballers’ first league game, when they play Waterford at 2pm on Sunday. All-Ireland intermediate finalists in 2016, where they lost by just a point to Kildare, Clare are likely to field up to four débutantes this weekend. With a number of key players from last year not involved this season, Clare will field a much less experienced team. Younger players like Lizzie Roche, Anna Courtney, Amanda Mulcair, Tara Kelly and Nicole O’Doherty are very likely to feature on Sunday, as Clare comes to grip with the absence of Louise Henchy (retired), Niamh Keane, Emma O’Driscoll and Laura Egan. Eva O’Dea is still absent due to a long-term knee injury, picked up in Clare’s 2016 All-Ireland semi-final win over Tipperary. Manager Neil Moynihan is hoping for the best against what are senior opponents. “Home advantage will be no advantage whatsoever when you’re playing the likes of Waterford, who are a senior team. We played them …

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Clare need to learn from Newbridge

In the immediate aftermath of Clare’s five-point defeat yet promotion-clinching league game away to Kildare on April 3, Mick Bohan identified strengthening the panel as a priority come the 2017 season. Saturday’s league final will, of course, feature largely the same personnel but it will be fascinating to see how Clare have evolved since playing the same opposition just three weeks ago. Club fixtures have cut into their preparation time but a feature of Clare this season has been their response to defeat. Losses to Tipperary and Offaly were followed by immediate improved performances and wins in their subsequent fixtures. If Clare can follow their defeat to Kildare with a win, or at least an exceptional display in Croke Park, it will further underline the quality of their preparation and their capacity to learn from game to game. “What has to happen now is, we have to put a plan in place for everyone involved in football in Clare including …

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