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Temp Head - Manager Diarmuid McNally knows the

Manager Diarmuid McNally knows the difficult task UCD will face in their bid to complete three wins in a row in the Irish Universities Collingwood Cup even with home advantage.

The Belfield side have managed to claim the trophy for the past two years with victories over Mary Immaculate College in Limerick (2012) and last year at Jordanstown over UCC.

So a win at Belfield next February when UCD will host the Centenary Collingwood Cup tournament would be most welcome.

McNally has been at the fore front of all UCD's recent major triumphs in Third Level Football since he first steered the Belfield side to a Collingwood Cup victory over the University of Ulster Coleraine at DCU in 2007.

Twice in that period the Belfield side under McNally completed the unique double of a Colleges and Universities Premier League title and an Irish Universities Collingwood Cup win in the same season.

The first time in 2007 and again three years later. UCD still remain the only Irish university side to achieve this remarkable feat.

Dave McMillen's goal last year gave UCD a narrow win over UCC at Jordanstown and was their fifth victory in seven years after going from 1994 until 2007 without any success.

McNally has been ably assisted in all of these glory days by the ever present Tony Sheridan

"Taking part in the Collingwood Cup will continue to be very important to UCD and doing well in it and in the Colleges and Universities Premier League are what we focus on each season," explained the UCD manager.

UCD are staging the tournament 100 years after the first Collingwood was played for in 1914 which they themselves won. And the Belfield side have also captured the Collingwood more times in its 100-year history than any other university.

FAI President Paddy McCaul together with Brian Mullins Director of Sport at UCD and Irish University officials presided at the draw which took place in historic Newman House St Stephen's Green, Dublin – the original home of UCD – and where details of the events to mark the 100 years of the cup were announced.

To celebrate the Collingwood centenary the Irish universities will establish a Dr Tony O'Neill Annual Services to University Football Award which will be presented at a centenary reunion dinner on the afternoon of Friday February 28. This is prior to the final which will then be played at the UCD Bowl under the floodlights for the first time ever and is set to be screened live on Setanta TV.

NUI Maynooth, who will face UCD in a quarter-final tie on day two of the tournament, could now be one of the universities to benefit from a decision of the Irish Universities Committee. It deleted a long-standing rule which means it is now possible for all universities to field any of their students in the Collingwood who are registered as professional players with outside clubs.


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