Okay, it’s quizzical monkey time once again, as we contemplate another qualifier draw in the morning. This one is for Round 4 and, as usual, it’ll take place on the RTÉ Radio One Morning Ireland show, just after the 8.30am news bulletin.
This is the final football qualifier draw of the year and the pairings made in the morning also dictate which Round 4 winners go where in the Super Eights. As the tables below show, these placings are pre-determined so for this draw it’s even more the case than hitherto on being careful about what one might wish for.
Here’s the line-up for Group 1:
And here’s Group 2:
Also relevant here is the order in which teams play each other in the two groups.
In Group 1, Meath or the Round 4 winner against them play Donegal away in Phase 1, followed by the Galway/Round 4 winner in Phase 2 at Croke Park and they then play Kerry at home in Phase 3. It follows that the Galway/Round 4 winner have Kerry away in Phase 1 and Donegal at home in Phase 3.
In Group 2, Cork or the Round 4 winner against them play Dublin away in Phase 1, followed by Cavan/Round 4 winner in Phase 2 at Croke Park and then play Roscommon at home in Phase 3. Which means that the Cavan/Round 4 winner have Roscommon away in Phase 1 and Dublin at home in Phase 3.
It may be worth noting here – apropos nothing – that for Rounds 2 and 3 we were paired both times with the county that had attracted the least support in the poll running here. That may, or may not, provide some advance warning about who we might pluck from the bowl this time.
My young lad has a theory on this, based on what teams the two of us have seen in the flesh and where in this year’s Championship. His theory goes thus: we saw Down first play at home and then we drew them in Round 2 to play at Páirc Esler, we first saw Armagh play away and so they got drawn away against us in Round 3. Based on this unassailable logic, it can only be Cavan, whom we first saw play in Clones, a neutral venue as the Round 4 ties have to be. How’s that for predestination?
Right, enough of the preamble – who’d you like to see us paired with bright and early tomorrow morning?
Who do you want us to draw in Round 4?
- Cavan (44%, 356 Votes)
- Meath (32%, 261 Votes)
- Galway (16%, 126 Votes)
- Cork (8%, 66 Votes)
Total Voters: 809