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Dublin: 10 °C Saturday 16 February, 2019
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Calculators at the ready…here’s the Allianz football league permutations

Plenty at stake in the four divisions today.

pjimage (2) Peter Crowley, Paul Conroy, Paul Flynn, Michael Quinlivan all in action today. Source: INPHO

Today’s Fixtures

Division 1
Kerry v Tyrone, Fitzgerald Stadium, 2pm
Monaghan v Dublin, Clones, 2pm
Mayo v Donegal, Castlebar, 2pm
Roscommon v Cavan, Dr Hyde Park, 2pm

Division 2
Cork v Down, Páirc Uí Rinn, 2pm
Clare v Meath, Ennis, 2pm
Galway v Kildare, Pearse Stadium, 2pm
Fermanagh v Derry, Enniskillen, 2pm

Division 3
Antrim v Longford, Corrigan Park, Belfast, 2pm
Louth v Sligo, Gaelic Grounds, Drogheda, 2pm
Armagh v Tipperary, Athletic Grounds, 2pm
Offaly v Laois, O’Connor Park, Tullamore, 2pm

Division 4
Westmeath v London, Mullingar, 1pm
Carlow v Wexford, Netwatch Cullen Park, 1pm
Limerick v Wicklow, Newcastlewest, 3pm

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IT’S THE FINAL day of action in the group stages of the Allianz football league today and there’s plenty at stake.

In Division 1 the final places have yet to be decided, other teams further down the divisions have promotion issues on their mind and more have relegation fears to consider.

If two teams finish level on points, head-to-head will determine who is ahead. Scoring difference will come in to play if three or more teams finish level.

Division 1

With no semi-finals in the top tier this year, today will determine who will reach next Sunday’s decider. Dublin are top on nine points with Donegal and Monaghan behind them on eight points, while Tyrone, Mayo and Kerry all still have a mathematical chance of booking a berth in the final.

The meeting of Dublin and Monaghan is a crucial match, whoever wins will progress to the final while a draw would do Dublin. If Donegal win against Mayo, they will also be certain of a final place.

Tyrone, Mayo and Kerry all need both Donegal and Monaghan to lose with scoring difference then possibly coming into play, although Tyrone on seven points can potentially leapfrog Donegal and Monaghan, if they defeat Kerry.

Mickey Harte and Eamonn Fitzmaurice at the end of the game Tyrone boss Mickey Harte and Kerry manager Éamonn Fitzmaurice Source: Andrew Paton/INPHO

At the bottom, Roscommon are already relegated. Cavan must win against Roscommon to be in with a shout of avoiding relegation. If Mayo lose to Donegal and Cavan end up on six points with them, Cavan’s superior head-to-head record will be telling. Yet if Cavan, Mayo and Kerry all finish on six points, scoring difference will come into play.

Division 2

The big game in the promotion stakes is in Salthill. Kildare are already assured of a place in the top flight next year, Galway can join them by drawing or winning the game at Pearse Stadium.

A defeat for Galway could open the door for Meath, who face Clare in Ennis in a game they must win. If Galway and Meath finish on nine points, the Royals will prevail due to the head-to-head record.

Andy McEntee heads out to the pitch Meath manager Andy McEntee Source: Colm O'Neill/INPHO

At the opposite end, there will be a dogfight for relegation with Cork, Clare, Down, Fermanagh and Derry all not safe. Cork only need a draw or a win against Down to be safe, and even if they do lose their superior scoring difference could prevent them falling through the trapdoor.

Derry are at the moment rooted to the bottom of the table but if they defeat Fermanagh and Down lose to Cork, they will be safe. Clare would be relegated if they lose and there are victories for both Fermanagh and Down.

Fermanagh could be relegated even if they beat Derry, as scoring difference may come into play if Down also see off Cork and Clare get a positive result against Meath. Plenty at stake then.

Division 3

It’s very simple in the promotion race here here. Louth booked their place last Sunday and will be joined by the winners of the Armagh and Tipperary game. A draw would be sufficient for Armagh to advance.

Jamie Clarke and Alan Campbell Armagh's Jamie Clarke and Tipperary's Alan Campbell will be in opposition today. Source: Presseye/Russell Pritchard/INPHO

The picture is less clear at the bottom of the table. Four teams – Longford, Laois, Antrim and Offaly – are on four points each, while Sligo are on five points.

Given Offaly are up against Laois and there’s a clash of Antrim and Longford, those games should determine the outcome. Whoever wins will survive and the losers will be relegated. A draw in either game could bring scoring difference into play.

Division 4

Everything is already wrapped up with Wexford and Westmeath having clinched the promotion spots on offer here.

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About the author:

Fintan O'Toole

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