Wednesday 22 January 2020

Cahill insists Dublin have firepower to cover for loss of Brogan duo

Liam Kelly

DUBLIN got their ABCs right last year and that's why the absence of the Brogan boys is not a major problem for the All-Ireland champions as they seek to clinch an Allianz League semi-final spot at Castlebar tonight.

Versatile veteran Barry Cahill appreciates the value of those A-versus-B training games that helped propel the Dubs to the major 'C' last year -- the championship success that had eluded the since 1995.

And while the Dubs would ideally prefer to have lethal finishers Alan and Bernard Brogan available for every match, Cahill takes heart from the form of forwards such as Diarmuid Connolly and Eoghan O'Gara (though currently injured) as well as the panel's strength.

"We can't be relying on Bernard and Alan all the time," said Cahill. "We were heavily reliant on Bernard in 2010, maybe not as much last year, but you are always looking for new lads to come in and step up. We had a very good squad last year, but I think it could be even stronger this year with a few of the lads that have come in.

competitive

"Once the As-versus-Bs training matches start, I see them being hugely competitive."

Cahill gets his first start in the league since breaking a finger in a club match. He replaces Alan Brogan at centre-forward on the team to face Mayo in the re-fixture of last month's match that was abandoned due to fog.

Brogan suffered a calf injury against Donegal last week that has not responded to treatment and had a scan on the leg yesterday. Manager Pat Gilroy doesn't expect him to be fit for up to three weeks.

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The Dubs boss announced three other changes -- James McCarthy in the half-backs in place of Jonny Cooper, Ross McConnell at midfield for Eamonn Fennell and Paul Brogan in the half-forwards ahead of Paul Flynn.

Dublin require two points from their last two fixtures against Mayo and Cork to secure a place in the league semi-finals and they'll be hoping to get the job done tonight.

Dublin (SF v Mayo): S Cluxton; C O'Sullivan, R O'Carroll, P McMahon; J McCarthy, G Brennan, K Nolan; M D Macauley, R McConnell; P Brogan, B Cahill, B Cullen (capt); T Quinn, D Connolly, K McManamon.

• Admission at Castlebar tonight is free with spectators invited to contribute €5 to charity.

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