There are games in four major competitions down for decision this weekend on the Limerick junior soccer front. The FAI Junior and Youth Cup, the Munster Junior Cup, the Tuohy Cup and the Limerick District League Premier Division matches will all be on show over the weekend.
The action starts tonight with the Touhy Cup meeting of Ballynanty and Mungret Regional at Jackman Park (7pm). Both sides enter the game after two big wins over Regional and Aisling Annacotty respectively. Mungret will have happy memories of the Careys Road venue having won the Division 1A cup last season.
Ballynanty will still be firm favourites especially considering their earlier victory over Mungret in the league this season but it will be no easy task.
On Sunday morning, There are six games in the FAI Junior Cup with 10.30pm kick-offs and the tie between Ballynanty Rovers and Charleville being the most eye catching. The game will take place at Limerick Institute of Technology with Donal Magee’s men being clear favourites against lower league opposition.
Charleville are in midtable in the Premier A League but are just six points adrift of league leaders Moyross. Last season’s relegation from the Premier Division cost the Cork based side the services of goal scorer Shane Dillon who joined Regional United but with Ballynanty facing Mungret Regional on Thursday night with a full strength side, Charleville will be looking to take advantage with a fast start.
Premier A side Hill Celtic will be looking to take advantage of a Janesboro side in transition when the two meet at Hogan Park on Sunday. Janesboro recently announced the signing of Aaron Fitzgerald from Limerick FC but have been knocked out of both the Munster Junior Cup and Munster Champions Cup in three weeks.
‘Boro have struggled to find the net this season with Arron Nunan often cutting an isolated figure up front. The Janesboro talisman will miss the game as he was selected for the Irish SOCCA team which features in the SOCCA world Cup in Crete starting on October 12th. It is a six -a-side tournament and Nunan will be a loss.
Amazingly,following the recent departure of Stephen Bradley to Fairview Rangers, Aidan Hurley and Lee O’Mara are the only senior players who remian at the club from last year’s squad which competed in the FAI Junior Cup.
Despite this, manager Shane O’Hanlon O’Hanlon will be hopeful that the young players brought in from Limerick such as Ger Barry, Fitzgerald and Jason Cross can begin to adapt to life at premier level. However, the Pearse Stadium outfit will be expected to advance to the third round on Sunday.
Prospect Priory will be hoping to avoid another early exit in a major competition following their defeat to Premier A high flyers Cappamore in the Munster Junior Cup last month. Losing manager Daithi O’Donoghue to rivals Janesboro and their perilous position at the bottom of the league table shows how poor a start it’s been at Priory Park.
It doesnt get any easier as Patrickswell, who are second in Division 1A, have already beaten a Premier Diviision side in Coonagh in the Munster Junior Cup.
In the Munster Junior Cup thirsd round, Geraldines make the trip to Elton to face Kilfrush Crusaders. Geraldines have been the surprise oackage in the Premier Division this season and are currently just three points behind Fairview and Pike Rovers.
Last season, the Garryowen outfit reached the semi-final of the competition before narrowly losing 0-1 agsainst St. Michaels, who defeated Pike in the final. Kilfrush are dangerous opposition on their home patch.
Former Geraldines player Keith O’Connor now lines out for the county outfit while Tyrique Leamy has recently returned following a very brief stint with Janesboro. Also, former Fairview striker David Hannon is curently with the club.
Kilfrush will be looking to go one better than last year in the league when the missed out on promotion on the last day of the season. Geraldines will still be expected to come through with the experience in their squad but it will be a tough encounter for Derek Hannon’s men.
Regional United host Hyde Rangers who are fresh off the back of two victories over highler league opposition in the form of Hlycross in both the Munster Junior and FAI Junior Cup.