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Dublin boss Dessie Farrell hopeful of Byrne return as he warns of Kildare final test

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Dublin manager Dessie Farrell during the Leinster GAA Football Senior Championship semi against Meath

Dublin manager Dessie Farrell during the Leinster GAA Football Senior Championship semi against Meath

Dublin manager Dessie Farrell during the Leinster GAA Football Senior Championship semi against Meath

Dublin looked back to their best at stages yesterday after a 13-point canter against Meath in the Leinster semi-final in Croke Park.

The Dubs led by 15 points at the interval, later increasing that advantage to 17 before it finished 1-27 to 1-14.

Dublin manager Dessie Farrell acknowledged that his side are in a better position than this time last year but added that such a position can be “fickle.” Dublin now play Kildare in the Leinster final on Saturday week and Farrell sees a “lot of relevance” to that game from their loss in Newbridge during the League.

“There’s a lot of momentum behind Kildare football at the minute. The backroom team there are icons in the county.

“I think the players are playing with great passion and pride in their jersey. It’s a proud county. There’s definitely something about Kildare this year. We played them in the League and they probably beat us quite comfortably down in Newbridge so that’s definitely a marker for us.”

Farrell said he was “optimistic” that defender Davy Byrne can still play a part in this year’s championship as he recovers from a knee injury that has kept him out of the last two matchday championship squads.

Earlier, Kildare never looked like losing their semi-final against a battling Westmeath side, although lacking the conviction of a team with genuine pretensions of toppling Dublin. They eventually ran out 1-21 to 2-15 winners.

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