Dubs beef up defence in readiness for Rebel attack
Published 25/04/2015 | 02:30
Dublin boss Jim Gavin has strengthened his defence against high-scoring Cork ahead of tomorrow's Allianz League Division 1 final and Bernard Brogan is also back in their starting line-up.
Ross O'Carroll returns from injury to his usual full-back role which was manned by St Olaf's Davy Byrne for the semi-final against Monaghan, but it is the repositioning of Cian O'Sullivan at centre-back that is more noticeable.
Newcomer John Small has impressed in the number six shirt this year and lined out there last time out but O'Sullivan has been given the central defensive role once again as the Dubs go chasing their third league title in succession.
With O'Sullivan moving back to the '45, Raheny's relative newcomer Brian Fenton, who has impressed in the last two games, is selected to partner Denis Bastick in the Dublin midfield.
And his move from wing-forward sees Brogan, also a late pre-match injury withdrawal the last day, return to the full-forward line.
Cork have racked up 14 goals in this year's league and scored four of them when they tore Donegal's famous blanket defence apart in their semi-final clash.
Dublin have also never beaten Cork in their four previous league finals in 2011, 1999, 1989 and 1952.
Offaly's footballers, meanwhile, welcome captain Paul McConway back from a suspension for their Division 4 final against Longford today.
They had injury worries about goalkeeper Alan Mulhall, Brian Darby and Daithi Brady but all are named in their starting line-up.
Roscommon will be without former All-Star corner-back Seanie McDermott due to suspension for their Division 2 final against Down.
But county U-21 star Enda Smith has had the black card and sending-off he received against Westmeath overturned.
Dublin (SF v Cork) - S Cluxton; P McMahon, R O'Carroll, J Cooper; J McCarthy, C O'Sullivan, J McCaffrey; D Bastick, B Fenton; P Flynn, C Kilkenny, D Connolly; D Rock, K McManamon, B Brogan.
Offaly (SF v Longford) - A Mulhall; B Darby, P McConway, D Brady; N Darby, J Moloney, J O'Connor; G Guilfoyle, N Smith; E Carroll, N McNamee, A Sullivan; B Allen, N Dunne, W Mulhall.