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'It's the biggest day of the year' - Cup specialists Crumlin and Avondale meet in Aviva Stadium final

The Aviva Stadium hosts a Dublin-Cork affair in the FAI Intermediate Cup this afternoon.

Avondale United's David Kiely (left) and Thomas Hyland of Crumlin United with the trophy this week.
Avondale United's David Kiely (left) and Thomas Hyland of Crumlin United with the trophy this week.
Image: Stephen McCarthy/SPORTSFILE

CRUMLIN UNITED ARRIVE at the Aviva Stadium for this afternoon’s FAI Intermediate Cup final (2pm) on a massive high — having wrapped up the league title last week. 

Martin Loughran’s men were crowned LSL Senior Sunday champions on 1 May thanks to a 5-0 away win over Cherry Orchard, with former Shelbourne and Longford Town midfielder Craig Walsh on target on the night. 

Having knocked out holders Maynooth University Town at the last-four stage thanks to Jake Donnelly’s last-gasp winner, the Dublin heavyweights are looking to lift the Intermediate Cup for the fifth time in their history after successes in 2009, 2010, 2015 and 2016. 

“For Crumlin, this is the biggest day of the year for us,” Crumlin’s Thomas Hyland said this week.

We’ve got a proud cup history in both this competition and the FAI Cup, and we’re desperate to win at our national stadium.

“It was an incredible semi-final and to win the game in the last minute was amazing. It’s definitely given us plenty of confidence to beat the holders coming into the final and we feel like we’ve been working up to this.”

Source: FAI TV/YouTube

However, their opponents, Avondale United, are also specialists when it comes to this competition. In fact, the Munster Senior League outfit boast the record for most FAI Intermediate Cup triumphs with seven. 

That includes an astonishing four-in-a-row between 2011 and 2014.

Yet while their league form hasn’t been up to scratch this season, they dug deep to see off fellow Cork side Rockmount 1-0 and book a date at the national stadium.

“It is definitely the biggest day of the year for us, we’re the record-holders in the competition and to not make it to the final in the past five seasons isn’t good enough for a club like Avondale,” said captain David Kiely.

We’ve had a difficult route to the final which has been good for us, made our way past some great opposition and we’re really looking forward to it.”

The game was due to be part of a double-header at Lansdowne Road along with the FAI Junior Cup final, as is recent tradition, but the meeting of Sheriff YC and St Michael’s has been postponed. 

Yesterday, it was revealed that Sheriff’s beaten semi-final opponents Aisling Annacotty had lodged a complaint with the FAI.  

Gavan Casey, Murray Kinsella and Bernard Jackman tee up Saturday’s Champions Cup final and look at the backroom problems in Munster:

Source: The42 Rugby Weekly/SoundCloud


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Ben Blake

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