Ó Sé expecting a a tune-up in Inniskeen

National Football League Division One

Monaghan v Kerry

(Saturday, Inniskeen, 2pm)

KERRY legend Tomás Ó Sé believes that both Monaghan and Kerry will have their eyes diverted towards the championship season when they meet in Inniskeen on Saturday afternoon.

On paper it looks a hugely important game. After five rounds, Monaghan are flirting with relegation and will likely require at least one win to secure a seventh straight season in the top flight.

Kerry, meanwhile, are just a point off Division One leaders Galway and with the Tribesmen facing a difficult run-in against Mayo and Dublin, there is every chance that the Kingdom can finish with the title if they perform well over the next 10 days.

Still, even with that in mind, Ó Sé feels that Oriel boss Seamus McEnaney and his Kerry counterpart Peter Keane will be treating it with less importance than in normal circumstances.

Monaghan have a tough Ulster Championship and if they are to get to the final and win it that’s four matches whereas Kerry have Cork in the semi-final.

They should get over the final if they do get into it,” Ó Sé told Gaelic Life.

Both teams will try and get a settled team as quickly as they can in these last two games.

Winning the league isn’t a priority for either team, it’s just about who they’ll get out of these games.

It’ll be interesting to see what two teams line up. I don’t think Kerry will have too many new faces after the county championship. I’m not sure about Monaghan either.

It will be interesting to see how they line up though and where they position their forwards.”

Even though Ó Sé expects the game to lack bite, he does think Kerry will be doing well if they don’t suffer their second defeat of the campaign.

Look, the challenge is going to be very tough up there,” he said.

I don’t think it’ll be the be-all and end-all regardless of who wins or loses though.

Both teams will be using this to try and get up to the tempo of the championship, to get the team settled and up to the pace of championship.

Kerry will use it to get used to the logistics, to get used to staying overnight. That kind of stuff.

It means that championship won’t come as a surprise if they have to travel, or in terms of eating (in the current restrictions).”

This weekend’s return to action will be played in an atmosphere of uncertainty with GAA officials due to meet again last night to further discuss matters.

Ó Sé, however, is confident that the inter-county season will be completed.

We’ve seen that the government want this to happen, that the GAA wants it to happen and I’ve also seen that even if we go to Level 5 it will still go ahead.

I think if it goes ahead it will be good for the country, it will be good for the mental well-being of people.

Obviously you don’t want it to be unsafe for anyone so hopefully without fans it will be safe.

But there will be things happening like we saw in Fermanagh, and teams will just have to stay as safe as they can.

But if it starts at all I think it will continue until the finish. I hope it does anyway.”

Monaghan’s last match was back on March 1 when they lost heavily to Donegal.

That has left them on five points after as many games.

Their final fixture will be a home clash with Meath next weekend.

By Niall McCoy 

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