KEVIN CASSIDY: I expect another big Donegal performance

THE Donegal juggernaut rolls on after another impressive performance last weekend when they dismantled Tyrone on home soil.

Jim McGuinness‘ men seem to be getting stronger with each passing week, and there is no doubt that they are now firmly in the conversation when it comes to All-Ireland potential winners.

I expected Tyrone to put up more of a fight last weekend given how the Ulster semi-final ended between these two teams.

On the day, Donegal were simply ruthless in their approach and when you score 21 points against another Ulster team then it’s obviously a good day.

Donegal are now in pole position to top the group, and that would give them a massive advantage as they head deep into the All-Ireland series.

Donegal travel to Cork this weekend and while it’s a long journey on the back of last week’s game, I fully expect them to be ready to deliver another top drawer performance to cement their place as group leaders with the last game against Clare to come. Tyrone, on the other hand, will now have their work cut out for them in order to finish second and try to avoid that away game in the preliminary quarter-finals.

Looking at Tyrone, I don’t believe that they can win the All-Ireland, but there is without doubt a big performance in them and they are capable of taking out one of the big hitters further down the line if all of their big players find form.

I said hear a number of weeks ago about the structure of the All-Ireland series, where I felt that the first couple of games would be a slow burner. I think that now after this weekend‘s round of games, we should see things really ramp up as teams begin to get themselves ready for the home stretch.

Kerry flexed their muscles last weekend, putting on and impressive performance against Monaghan with Dublin doing likewise against Roscommon.

It will be interesting to see over the next week or two what the likes of Mayo, Galway and Armagh can do. I expect the likes of Dublin, Kerry and Donegal to top their groups so that means that we should be in for some very interesting battles come quarter-final time.

There is one team that I want to give a special mention to and that is Louth. Why? Over the last number of years they have made terrific strides and haven being dealt a blow of losing Mickey Harte the wheels could have come off. Credit has to go to Ger Brennan who has steadied the ship. They had a fantastic win last weekend and I fully expect them to qualify from their group which would be a fantastic achievement for the county.

Armagh also got their season back on track with a muc- needed win last weekend but unfortunately for Kieran McGeeney’s men, the stiff tests are yet to come so I will be keeping a keen eye on their progress over the next two games.

My predictions for this weekend are as follows – Donegal, Dublin, Mayo, Derry, Louth, Kerry and Tyrone. Now there is a bet to fund your summer holiday.

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