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Dublin: 10 °C Thursday 21 March, 2019
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Six players to watch in Sunday's Leinster senior club football final

There is plenty of talent on show this weekend, here are a few footballers to keep a close eye on.

Image: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

1. Michael Darragh Macauley (Ballyboden St Enda’s)

Source: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

Macauley mightn’t be the most the stylish footballer to watch but there is no arguing with his effectiveness.

He is the type of player most teams would love to have; his engine, work-rate and leadership are crucial for this Ballyboden side. He never lets his midfield opponent settle and keeps them on the backfoot from the off.

The former Footballer of the Year is prone to the odd silly foul but his fielding and ability to turn over the ball are invaluable.

2. Cahir Healy (Portlaoise)

Source: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

Healy (pictured above right), who has played for Laois in football and hurling and has in recent times focused on the small ball at inter-county level, has lined out across the full-back line and in midfield in recent weeks for ‘the Town’.

While still just 28, he has been around the top level for a long time and has plenty of experience to call on having been a mainstay on the team during their nine-in-a-row run in Laois. And he will need every bit of it against this potent Ballyboden full-forward line on Sunday.

 3. Colm Basquel (Ballyboden St Enda’s)

Source: Tommy Grealy/INPHO

A Dublin minor in 2014, Basquel has been a revelation this season for Boden. He has taken some of the scoring pressure off the likes of Andrew Kerin and Conal Keaney and has come up with some crucial scores in the Dublin club’s march to the Leinster final.

Basquel, along with older brother Ryan, were in scintillating form against St Vincent’s in their shock victory in the Dublin decider and Colm has continued to excel. Ryan, however, has been absent since as he sustained a broken jaw in that county final.

4. Paul Cahillane (Portlaoise)

Source: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

Cahillane’s statistics speak for themeselves – 4-14 in his last four games and 4-5 of that from play.

The full-forward won a Leinster title in 2009 and his athletic pedigree is obvious, still playing soccer with Wexford Youths after an unsuccessful stint with Glasgow Celtic as a teenager.

His battle with Boden full-back Stephen Hiney will be tasty.

5. Darragh Nelson (Ballyboden St Enda’s)

Source: Tommy Grealy/INPHO

Captain Nelson is a classy operator at centre-back. He reads the game well and distributes the ball excellently.

The former Dublin panellist would likely make most inter-county sides in the country and has been a vital cog in this Boden team this season.

6. Brian McCormack (Portlaoise)

Source: Donall Farmer/INPHO

Brian ‘Bruno’ McCormack is another who has been there and done that with Portlaoise. And the 34-year-old is still going strong in a dangerous full-forward line alongside Cahillane and Brian Smith.

After putting 5-12 past Longford champions Emmet Óg Killoe last time out, they won’t be short on confidence this weekend.

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About the author:

Alan Waldron

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