GAA: ‘Derry county final will be a classic’ - Brian McIver

Slaughtneil's S� McGuigan and Ballinderry's Conor Wilkinson.
Slaughtneil's S� McGuigan and Ballinderry's Conor Wilkinson.

Anyone who is in Celtic Park on Sunday for the Derry county final will get more than their money’s worth, promises Derry manager Brian McIver.

He is predicting that it will be a cracking game between his native Ballinderry and the livewire pretenders to their throne, Slaughtneil.

And he’s warning that the Robert Emmets will ask some serious questions of their more lauded opponents as they clash in the county championship final for the second time in three seasons, the Shamrocks having won in 2012.

“They are two very good sides, defences very solid and strong, midfields which are fiercely competitive and forwards who are full of all the required skills, fast and fluent and capable of racking up lots of pretty good scores.

“Calling the winners won’t be easy, but what I think is a safe forecast is that it has all the makings of a real classic county final” added the Oak Leaf boss, who is already thinking nearly eight months ahead, to the Ulster Championship in which his Derry team is drawn against Down.

“Nothing has changed in the nature of this competition, by a country mile the best provincial competition of them all. Down turned us over two years ago in Celtic Park and we know there is a lot of work to be done before we run out against them, but it’s an appetising challenge.

“It’s obviously a tough test for us, but it always is in the Ulster Championship, so there’s nothing new about that” added the Ballinderry man, who will take comfort from the fact that a win will pit them against just one from the Donegal, Tyrone and Armagh dogfights.