Bank Of Ireland Ulster U21 Final – Glen v St John's (Sunday 2.15pm in )
CAN THE JOHNNIES STOP GLEN'S BACK TO BACK HOPES?
It's difficult to see who or indeed if anyone can stop Glen powering their way to a second successive Ulster U21 title. This Sunday the next challenger to step into the ring are Antrim kingpins St John's.
Last year Emmett Bradley scored 0-6 as Glen edged out St John's at the semi-final stage (2-14 to 3-6). This Sunday Bradley will be watching from the stand along with Brendan O'Kane and last year's captain Michael Warnock who are overage.
Goalkeeper from twelve months ago Ciaran McCloy is still eligible but has last lost the number one jersey to last year's Derry minor goalie Callum -Young.
Brendan O'Kane's place in defence has been taken by Conor Gallagher, but Gallagher came off at half time last Sunday and was replaced in the game with concussion.
Ryan played midfield last year but hasn't featured much this year with hamstring trouble
and it's unlikely he will come into the reckoning this Sunday.
It's a new look midfield this year in the shape of Conor Glass and Ciaran McFaul, in the reshuffle Connor Carville has returned to the defence after injury.
Up front Jack Doherty, Cahir McCabe, and are the new kids on the block but McCabe came on as a sub against St John's last year.
St John's for their part have been the dominant force in Antrim but this year have lost Nugent who transferred to neighbouring club . They are also without the influential Johnston brothers – Ciaran and Conor.
Both of whom have appeared to have thrown their lot in with Antrim hurlers and are expected to be on duty when Antrim host Kildare this Sunday.
There was an apparent bust up in the dressing room before their opening Ulster game against Cavan's United and the Johnston brothers haven't featured for St John's since.
When PJ names his team during the week the Glen contingent will be checking for the presence of C Johnston in the .
In their semi final win over a it took a late scoring burst from St John's to get over the line.
were 1-9 to 1-6 ahead and appeared safe. A late goal from Matthew Fitzpatrick, his second of the game brought the sides level. Midfielder Ryan McNulty edged them ahead with an injury time point before substitute Jude McCurdy killed the South Armagh resolve with a third goal.
Enda scouting process has flagged up any threats and he will assign their specialised man maker to curb the influence of Fitzpatrick, who has scored 3-3 in the two games so far.
St John's boss McCurdy will have CJ McKenna back who missed the game due to a pre arranged holiday.
In the and games Glen have been slow out of the blocks. They are on the road a long time and 'getting up' for every game is a difficult challenge, especially when they are so accustomed to winning.
Mulholland hinted last week that the management team are always challenging them to improve and that performance is the main yardstick. wasn't worried about his side's missed chances – so long as they are creating.
Perhaps Sunday is the day they get off to a whirlwind start and blow the Johnnies away in the early stages. Fresh in the mind will be the dressing room scene from last year's semi final when St John's were 3-5 to 1-5 ahead. will be looking for a better showing this time.
With four Ulster minor titles the are highly experienced in tournament football and retaining
the Paddy Cup is the next step in their development.
The men from the will provide a sterner test than but it's hard to see anything other than a Glen win.
Likely Glen: C -Young; C Gallagher, C McDevitt, O ; R McDonnell, C Carville, C Mulholland; C Glass, C McFaul; J Doherty, D , C McCabe; C , P Gunning, T .
St John's: M McKenna; C , J Hannigan, L Laverty; P Nugent, M Bradley, C Hanna; R , R McNulty; P McKenna, C McEvoy, R Hannigan; O McKenna, M Fitzpatrick, F Morgan.
GLEN v ST JOHN'S PREVIOUS MEETINGS
Ulster U21 Semi Final (2015) - Glen 2-14 St John' 3-6
Trailing 3-5 to 1-5 at half time Glen put in a superb second half performance restricting St John's to just a single point in the second half.
Four points in the first five minutes of the second half, two from Emmett Bradley and two from McFaul saw Glen on their way to a five point victory.
Glen: Ciaran McCloy, , Ryan McDonnell, Conor McDevitt, Mulholland (0-1), Conor Glass, Brendan O`Kane, Ryan , Emmett Bradley (0-6), Danny (1-1), Ciaran McFaul (0-5), Michael Warnock, Paul Gunning, Stephen O'Hara (0-1), Conor (1-0). Sub used: Cahir McCabe for Paul Gunning.
Ulster MFC Preliminary Round (2012) - Glen 3-12 St John's 0-10
The St John's forward line had been much talked about going into this game but Glen's defence blotted them out and Ciaran McCloy saved a Padraig Nugent penalty.
At the other end Ryan setup Conor for a goal helping them into a 1-9 to 0-3 interval lead.
In the second half 'Dougie' was again involved in setting up Paul Gunning's goal and added two points of this own. Danny scored Glen's third goal to seal the deal.
Glen: Ciaran McCloy; Conor McDevitt; Ryan McDonald; ; Conor Gallagher; Connor Carville; Mulholland; Ryan ; Conor Glass: Tomas ; Ciaran McFaul; Stevie O’Hara; Paul Gunning; Conor ; Danny
Subs: Cahir Glass; Kevin ; Declan ; Shay ; Gavin O’Connor; Mark ; Flanagan; Jack Doherty.